News


Tonight: Aircraft noise over Atherton on council agenda

Atherton residents have been making some noise of their own over the increase in aircraft noise that's resulted from a start-up company's new flight service into and out of the San Carlos Airport.

The impact of Surf Air's single-engine turboprop aircraft flights over Atherton, and possible steps the town can take to mitigate the noise, will be discussed at the City Council's regular meeting on Wednesday, Nov. 20.

Mayor Elizabeth Lewis said she has met with representatives of Surf Air and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), as well as with county Supervisor Warren Slocum, to try to work out solutions to the high-decibel problem. Surf Air has already put in place several measures, such as keeping the aircraft's gear up and flying faster over the affected areas, but residents have reported that the change in noise level is "indiscernible," Mayor Lewis said.

Neighborhoods most affected are in the north and eastern areas of town, including Encinal School, she said.

In a staff report, City Manager George Rodericks said the town last month assisted with a decibel reading at 20 Holbrook Lane, and measured the noise from a Surf Air plane flying about 1,500 feet overhead at 68-72 decibels. The town's noise ordinance restricts noise at that time of day -- about 7:30 a.m. -- to 60 decibels, the report said. The ambient noise at that location registered 48.5-51.5 decibels.

Mr. Rodericks said that Surf Air is planning to expand its services, and "it is likely that there will be additional flights added to the San Carlos Airport."

The new company is an "all-you-can-fly membership service" aiming to "revolutionize the world of air travel," according to its website. It now offers 16 daily departures between Burbank, San Carlos, and Santa Barbara, and next month will add Hawthorne and Palm Springs to the mix, the website says. And, it says, "We plan to expand soon to Monterey, San Diego, Sacramento, Lake Tahoe, and the Sonoma/Napa area."

The FAA representative who met with the mayor and others in town "encouraged the residents to form a committee and request a 'new plane approach' to address the noise issue," Mr. Rodericks said in the report.

Mayor Lewis told the Almanac that getting a new approach approved by the FAA could take more than two years, but the town needs to start the process. She said the approach possibly could be redirected over US-101, and that the town doesn't want it pushed over into other neighborhoods.

Although the glide path into San Carlos Airport has been in place for many years, the increase in noise is due to the added number of flights with Surf Air's launch, and the larger size of the aircraft Surf Air is flying, Mayor Lewis said.

The council will discuss Mr. Rodericks' recommendation that the mayor and council member-elect Rick DeGolia be authorized "to facilitate a public meeting, inviting council representatives from adjacent jurisdictions," to gather public comment. Mr. DeGolia has been active in meetings of town officials and residents on the issue.

The Nov. 20 meeting begins at 7 p.m. in the Council Chambers, 94 Ashfield Road in the Town Center.

Comments

Posted by Al, a resident of Menlo Park: South of Seminary/Vintage Oaks
on Nov 18, 2013 at 10:15 pm

Atherton might also want to look into plane interference with radio signals. I lose my digital TV reception every time a plane flies over. I realize everyone in Atherton probably has cable, but digital TV probably aren't the only signals being affected.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Nov 19, 2013 at 9:01 am

When are Atherton residents going to figure out they don't live in the country? They live within the Bay Area where there are three major airports within 20 miles and two smaller airports to the "north" and "south." Get a grip folks. I'm betting you all knew these airports were there when you bought your homes. Did you honestly think there would never be planes landing and taking off there?


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Nov 19, 2013 at 9:58 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.


I was a project manager on the development of the world's first silent airplane (Prize Crew QT-1) developed by ARPA and have spent almost 20 years , 10 as chair, on the Joint Community Relations Committee (JCRC) at the Palo Alto airport. I understand the physics of airplane noise from my ARPA work and I deeply understand the social and political aspects of airplane noise from my JCRC work. During my ten years as Chair of the JCRC I personally talked to every person who complained of aircraft noise. Almost all of the solvable noise problems were dealt with by changing pilot behavior.



My lessons from this experience are:


1 The FAA has virtually no interest in noise issues and will NOT be your 'noise police' . Their sole concern with these flights is that they be conducted safely.

2 The airport has NO control over SurfAir's operation once a SurfAir plane leaves the ground. As a long time recipient of FAA Airport Improvement Program grants San Carlos Airport is prohibited from denying use to any airplane that can safely operate from the airport.

3 The best, and virtually only approach, is to work with SurfAir to get their pilots to adopt Controlled Descent Approach procedures.

********************************************
Here are some of my interactions on this matter:


10 Oct

From: PETER CARPENTER <peterfcarpenter@me.com>
Subject: Advice
Date: October 10, 2013 2:57:12 PM PDT
To: cory@surfair.com

Cory,
As a now retired private, instrument rated private pilot who flew a very noisy Cessna 185 out of Palo Alto and as the former Chair of the Palo Alto Airport Joint Community Relations Committee and as a Lindenwood resident I would be please to provide advice on how SurfAir might respond to community concerns regarding your operations. The JCRC was able to virtually eliminate citizen complaints by working with pilots to modify their operations so as to reduce their noise footprint without compromising safety. For example, my 185 actually had better takeoff performance at lower than peak RPM which meant much lower tip speeds and much less prop noise - a fact ascertained after carefully researching readily available data that was not in the aircraft manual.

Let me know how I might be helpful.

Peter Carpenter
Mr. Carpenter,

Thank you very much for reaching out again. We had a very productive meeting with several members and leaders of your community, the airport, and the airpot tower manager, last Friday, in which the concerns of the community were discussed and a plan of action was laid out. As part of that plan of action, Surf Air is currently working to roll out a revised approach procedure, which we expect to have implemented amongst all of our pilots by early next week. This procedure will delay the point at which the flaps and landing gear are dropped to beyond the Atherton/Menlo Park/North Fair Oaks area, and should make Surf Air flights unnoticeable. I would love to receive your feedback as we begin implementing these changes.

We will also continue working with the airport, community and neighborhood to explore other options for addressing the concerns, and it would be my pleasure to keep you updated on the resolutions that are explored.

Again, thank you very much for reaching out. We look forward to a long and fruitful relationship with the members of your neighborhood, and we are serious about doing what needs to be done to make that happen.

Sincerely,

Cory Cozzens |
Co-Founder & SVP, Biz Dev
571-438-8001 | cory@surfair.com
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Peter Carpenter from Lindenwood19 Oct

From: PETER CARPENTER <peterfcarpenter@me.com>
Subject: Re: Advice
Date: October 19, 2013 2:19:50 PM PDT
To: Cory Cozzens <cory@surfair.com>

Cory,
This is a win-win-win solution. The new flight profile will have a much lower noise footprint, you will have shorter flight times and you will use less fuel.

Well done and thanks,

**************************
Some of my Nextdoor postings on this matter:
Peter Carpenter from Lindenwood19 Oct

In near the near idle power mode that these planes will be using in their new landing profile the noise foot print will be substantially reduced. At ground level in our neighborhoods these planes will be no more noticeable than the many other small single engine airplanes in our sky - and probably even less noticeable.
Power and drag are what cause aircraft noise and these planes will now be operating at very lower power with their wheels still retracted.
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Peter Carpenter from Lindenwood19 Oct

Here is a great explanation of the type of approach that SurfAire will now be using:
Web Link
Continuous Descent Approaches (CDAs)
One effective technique is called Continuous Descent Approach (CDA). This technique keeps aircraft higher and at lower thrust for longer by eliminating the level segments in conventional "step down" approaches.
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Peter Carpenter from Lindenwood19 Oct

The approach path that SurfAire flies will NOT be changed. That flight path was developed by the FAA with careful consideration of adjacent obstacles, airports and approaches to other airports. You are dreaming if you think that there is any chance of changing that fllght path and SurfAire has NO control over the horizontal location of that flight path. What SurfAire IS doing is modifying the vertical dimension of their approaches along that horizontal path. Since ground noise is the inverse square of the distance of the aircraft above the ground and directly related to the engine speed the SurfAire modifications should result in a dramatic decrease in their ground sound footprint. If that remains unacceptable to you then your only alternative is to move. The FAA will NOT change the horizontal dimensions of the San Carlos approach.




From: Cory Cozzens <cory@surfair.com>
Subject: Re: Advice
Date: October 21, 2013 10:13:56 AM PDT
To: PETER CARPENTER <peterfcarpenter@me.com>

Mr. Carpenter,
Thank you very much for sharing this with me. Communications were sent to all Surf Air pilots last night to begin implementing the revised approach procedures which we previously discussed, starting today. Please let me know how things sound this week. We incredibly appreciate your support and patience as we work to resolve this issue.
Sincerely,

Cory Cozzens |
Co-Founder & SVP, Biz Dev
571-438-8001 | cory@surfair.com

On Sun, Oct 20, 2013 at 6:13 PM, PETER CARPENTER <peterfcarpenter@me.com> wrote:
Cory,

See my Nextdoor posting below. You and your pilots have the opportunity starting tomorrow to put the neighborhood's concerns to rest by flying noise free CDA's into San Carlos. Even one deviation from such CDA's will perpetuate the current fervor. I know from my JCRC experience that noise sensitive neighbors can and will make you life miserable.

Peter

****************************************************
"When an airport sponsor requests and accepts Federal airport assistance, it signs a binding agreement that includes a commitment to comply with specific grant assurances. These grant assurances are included in the documents that an airport sponsor receives with each and every grant. Most of the grant assurances, including those at issue in this case, are established by statute, and the sponsor does not have the option to pick and choose those assurances with which it will comply. It is a sponsor's responsibility and right, before accepting a grant, to understand and determine if compliance with all of the grant assurances is acceptable to the community. The responsibility includes a reasonable effort to resolve differences of opinion over the nature of those obligations. Once a grant is accepted, a sponsor's local authority is constrained by the obligations, which the sponsor undertakes in exchange for valuable consideration, i.e., the Airport Improvement Program grants."

"As the owner of the airport, the ACPAA has entered into agreements with the FAA for assistance to finance airport development. As required by the AAIA, and predecessor statutes, the ACPAA, in each such agreement has provided the FAA with an assurance that the airport will be available for public use on fair and reasonable terms without unjust discrimination to all types, kinds and classes of aeronautical uses. The FAA does consider an airport's classification as a general aviation and/or reliever airport to limit the obligation to provide for access to all types, kinds and classes of aeronautical use."

PFC note - Other communities have spent millions trying to change these FAA AIP rules or to get exceptions and they have ALL failed. It would be a fool's errand to attempt to change that FAA AIP rules with regard to San Carlos airport.


Posted by Judyjudyjudy, a resident of Atherton: Lloyden Park
on Nov 19, 2013 at 11:51 am

Move to Foster City, or San Bruno, and find out what noise really is.

Or get relative: spend a night in San Carlos or Belmont and notice how quiet they are.

Oh wait, that's trains and track signals making all the noise.... Sorry can't hear the planes due to all the clanging and horns!!!!


Posted by Alan, a resident of Menlo Park: Belle Haven
on Nov 19, 2013 at 12:14 pm

Fly out of John Wayne Airport in Orange County sometime. They do this maneuver where they climb steeply at the beginning of the flight to 1000 feet, then suddenly level out - just to reduce noise for the wealthy residents of Newport Beach. The flight attendants from Southwest usually make a joke of it.

It's a little strange that Atherton residents feel they have airplane noise problems from tiny San Carlos airport - especially since it's not in the flight path. I used to live a mile past the end of the San Jose Airport, where they would take off over the bay - now *that* place had real airplane noise.

But, if small changes in pilot behavior makes this quieter for everyone - who can really disagree with that. It would seem that East Palo Alto has more of an issue with planes taking off from the Palo Alto Airport - are the residents there calling for a change?


Posted by pearl, a resident of another community
on Nov 19, 2013 at 12:50 pm

To Judyjudyjudy: Thanks for your comment. It made me laugh. We live right next to the RR tracks, and after a decade, we have gotten used to the trains, well, as much as you can get used to them. The thing we have NOT gotten used to is those noisy little single-engine planes that take off all day long from the San Carlos Airport. You know what I'm talking about, those little planes, as they ascend, making that annoying nnnneeeeeyaaahhhhh sound. It's particularly bad on weekends. I called the San Carlos Airport once to tell them about those noisy little planes, and the guy on the other end of the line said they are constantly reminding the pilots to keep the noise down as much as possible. I haven't noticed any improvement over the years.

One thing I have noticed is the large passenger jets that are now flying over the Peninsula just to the west side of El Camino Real. On a quiet day here, the noise really bothers me. But, I guess there's nothing we can do, except grin and bear it -- or move, which I'm not going to do. I was born and raised here on the Peninsula, and this is where I plan to stay.

I also noticed, several days ago, two large, dark brown planes that took off at the same time mid-afternoon from the San Carlos Airport. (At first, I thought they were military airplanes.) They were flying very low. As they ascended and headed south, one plane arced to the left, the other to the right, both spewing forth great billows of brown smoke into the air. It was very alarming. I hope these planes were not from the SurfAir fleet.

To Peter Carpenter: Thanks for trying to mitigate the noise problem. Your efforts are much appreciated.


Posted by Problem solved, a resident of Atherton: West Atherton
on Nov 19, 2013 at 4:31 pm

If we paid more in parcel taxes, certainly within what we can afford, we could be purchasing a jet for the Atherton police department to handle this problem. Giving a ticket in mid air might require some additional equipment, but is well worth the price. At the very least, some surface to air missile capability. Stop preventing these officers from doing their jobs by being penny wise and pound foolish.


Posted by Pat, a resident of Portola Valley: Ladera
on Nov 19, 2013 at 6:30 pm

In Ladera, I too have noticed increasing airplane noise. At times it feels as if the plane is going to land in my back yard. To be jolted awake by low flying planes is particularly annoying at night. On occasion, I've had ornaments be vibrated off shelves. What is Ladera doi8ng about this? What is our near neighbor Portola Valley doing about this?


Posted by Jon Rodgers, a resident of another community
on Nov 19, 2013 at 7:17 pm

As a pilot and former Alameda resident, who learned to fly at Oakland International, which along with San Francisco International makes more noise from more aircraft of all types for more neighbors in Alameda, Oakland and San Leandro than San Carlos will ever comprehend; I can assure you that pressuring (read intimidating) Surf Air about noise abatement will reduce safety and never make it quiet enough since I received a noise complaint while flying a glider. Also, as a consultant who specializes in noise mitigation, I don't care where people live relative to an airport. Moreover, I don't even care if they complain. But if they do, the airport's job is to manage them to take the noise and again for safety reasons, not bother the pilots.

Jon Rodgers
President
JON RODGERS AVIATION CONSULTING
P.O. Box 8437
Van Nuys, CA 91409-8437
Tel. 661-245-1243


Posted by Jetman, a resident of another community
on Nov 19, 2013 at 10:08 pm

If you think commercial jet noise has increased in the last few months... you are correct. In August 2013 the South China Morning Post reported that the FAA, in response to the Asiana crash at SFO, had begun advising Foreign Airlines to stop using the 5,000' visual approach to SFO, and to only fly 3,000' GPS final approach routes. These overseas flights, which typically use older four engined aircraft, are the jets rattling your windows, and vibrating your walls.

The smaller two-engined jets that emit a high pitched whistle are flying a new approach to SFO known as "NextGen" which the FAA began to roll-out at Bay Area airports in January 2013. Under "NextGen", aircraft "coast" down from altitude at high speed along several precisely navigated approaches. If you live under one of the "NextGen" approach routes, you better get used to it. The precision navigation used in the "Nextgen" system will channel air traffic into several narrow flight paths, and allow air traffic control to use much smaller aircraft-to-aircraft spacing. While the "Nextgen" approach may slightly reduce the noise level of an individual aircraft, residents living under a "Nextgen" approach route will experience a much greater number of aircraft passing overhead.


Posted by MP Resident, a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Nov 20, 2013 at 2:49 am

Peter Carpenter: It just dawned on me why you always post comments claiming that there is very little airplane noise from SFO Airport affecting mid-Peninsula residents: You are a retired private pilot who has developed a high tolerance for airplane noise. For you, the noise falls on deaf ears. People like me (who you have constantly belittled) are sensitive to the increasing noise pollution that has taken place as more and more commercial airplanes are flying at lower and lower altitudes and being vectored over our neighborhoods. I think it's quite hypocritical of you to dismiss complaints about airplane noise posted on the Almanac in the past, and now try to mitigate airplane noise in your own neighborhood. It's because the airplane noise directly affects you, your family, and your neighbors (perhaps even your property value) whereas you clearly do not have any sympathy for residents of other nearby communities who also are besieged with > 65 dB noise from commercial airplanes and are seeking the same as you now are.


Posted by Noisy Planes, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Nov 20, 2013 at 5:39 am

Menlo Voter brings up a valid point about the pre-existing airports. For as long as I can remember, there's been commercial jet traffic over the east part of Atherton; it is on the approach for landing at SFO. Certainly, residents have know or should have known about this noise.

What's changed is the volume of traffic and capacity of the airport. SFO of today is much larger and busier than the same airport of the 1960s. Likewise, San Carlos airport has always catered to private, light aircraft. It appears to have gone into the commercial business.

It's those changes that are causing this outcry. SFO has responded reasonably by instructing pilots to modify their approaches. Yet, there are still some noisy aircraft or pilots who don't care.

The public should have some say about using San Carlos airport for commercial flights. This new operator has a direct impact on the environment, yet there's been no due process regarding whether that business should be allowed.

So, yes, it's true the airports have always been there. But, when those airports substantially change, the public should have a right to be heard about the nature of those changes and whether they should be allowed. That did not appear to have happened for the San Carlos Airport and the regular operation of commercial flights.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Nov 20, 2013 at 6:53 am

As one other poster has noted, the airspace above the bay area is controlled by the FAA. They are interested in safety not noise mitigation. That's the way it should be and that's the way I like it. Where I live we have frequent aircraft approaching San Carlos airport over flying our home. Some of it goes directly overhead and some of it, such as the Surfair flights, pass to the "east." In my experience there is a far lower noise signature from the Surfair Pilatus flights than piston driven single aircraft. The difference perhaps is the frequency.

There have been commercial operators at San Carlos for a long time so to claim that the community should have had some input into commercial operations at San Carlos is specious.

Bottom line, the airports have been there for a very long time and for anyone to think that air traffic would not or could not increase over time is either foolish or nave.


Posted by Paul, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Nov 20, 2013 at 12:27 pm

If the residents can get ambulance companies to shut off their sirens once they are south of 5th Ave on ECR, they can certainly get airplane noise under control so they aren't disturbed in their state of the art double insulated window and often concrete wall fortified fortresses. Have them fly over Sims Metal!


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Nov 20, 2013 at 12:41 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

" they can certainly get airplane noise under control so they aren't disturbed in their state of the art double insulated window and often concrete wall fortified fortresses."

Wrong, the residents have NO control over aircraft noise - ZERO, ZIP, NONE.


Posted by Jetman, a resident of another community
on Nov 20, 2013 at 2:26 pm

The FAA is what is known as a "captive" federal agency. The FAA has been infiltrated and is controlled by lobbyists, and revolving-door agents of the industry it charged with regulating.

The aircraft industry, with the help of the FAA, has been laboring for several years to prepare the political battlefield for the increase in aircraft noise we are experiencing today.

In September of 2010, the FAA established an advisory committee to help with implementation of "Nextgen" air traffic control. Members of the committee are: Air Line Pilots Association, Air Transport Association of America, Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association, Boeing, DoD, MITRE Corp, Garmin, Honeywell, Rockwell, Harris Corp, NASA, National Business Aviation Association, Raytheon, Alaska Airlines, and FedEx.

A September 2010 GAO report on environmental impacts at airports indicated that the changes in aircraft flight paths that will accompany "NextGen" efforts would affect some communities that were previously unaffected or minimally affected by aircraft noise and expose them to increased noise levels, which could raise community concerns, and trigger the need for environmental reviews.

In 2011 the "Nextgen" committee lobbied for, and received, Congressional legislation allowing any changes to air routes below 3,000', near core airports, to be granted a "categorical exclusion" from any environmental assessment or environmental impact statement.


Posted by librich, a resident of Woodside: Kings Mountain/Skyline
on Nov 20, 2013 at 5:58 pm

The FAA is ruining the quality of life in the Kings Mountain/Skyline area. Based on stats provided to us by SFO, the traffic over our neighborhood is six times what it was ten years ago. We might as well be living in San Bruno. If you're upset, stay tuned. We're launching a website to bring together angry residents.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Nov 20, 2013 at 7:59 pm

To all of you bitching about aircraft noise. It's due to increased air traffic. Increased air traffic generated by the increased population of the bay area. If by some strange turn of events you actually have some effect on it I fully expect you'll be on here bitching about how hard it is to get a timely flight out of the bay area. You'll have yourselves to thank for that.


Posted by Kaz, a resident of La Entrada School
on Nov 20, 2013 at 8:33 pm

. Mr. Carpenter, you so often sound off In a harsh and critical tone on topics where you don't have a direct interest that it's hard to take you seriously in any forum. How amusing that your area of expertise is jet noise, that when it's a problem anywhere but your neighborhood you are dismissive , but when it affects you directly you throw out credentials and a file full of correspondence. Too bad that as such an "active" member of the community you don't more often find ways to help your community.


Posted by neighbor, a resident of another community
on Nov 20, 2013 at 11:15 pm

Mr. Carpenter usually just cites the facts or the law when discussions on these pages get irrational and hysterical. But then there are those who persist with conspiracy theories or other versions of "don't confuse me with the facts."

I suppose all the complaining and conspiracy talk on these pages makes for interesting reading for some folks -- but actually it is very distressing that citizens of this wealthy and educated community, who should at least occasionally feel good about being able to live here, do nothing but complain about absolutely everything.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Nov 20, 2013 at 11:31 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Kaz states"Too bad that as such an "active" member of the community you don't more often find ways to help your community."

Clearly Kaz hasn't been paying much attention to my community activities over the last twpdecaes.


MP resident states " I think it's quite hypocritical of you to dismiss complaints about airplane noise posted on the Almanac in the past, and now try to mitigate airplane noise in your own neighborhood" Wrong the planes in question do NOT bother me; I am simpy giving expert advice to those who are bothered by that noise.


Posted by Jetman, a resident of another community
on Nov 21, 2013 at 2:02 am

Landing Protocols Changed after Fatal Asiana Crash
South China Morning Post Thursday, 01 August, 2013
"...The shift away from side-by-side landing came as the FAA started advising foreign airlines to use a GPS system instead of visual reckonings when landing at San Francisco. The agency said it had noticed an increase in aborted landings by some foreign carriers flying visual approaches..."

Linked visual Approach Plate specifies an altitude of 5,000' at Menlo INT:
Web Link

Linked (GPS) Approach Plate specifies an altitude of 3,000' at Menlo IAF:
Web Link

Pilot instructors reported after the Asiana crash that the foreign pilots they were training had very poor manual flying skills due to the complete lack of private aviation in their home countries, and the widespread use of social media to cheat on examinations. Instructors also reported that when they switched off the auto-pilot, to test manual flying skills, the pilots would often panic.

If these pilots are not skilled enough to fly a visual approach to SFO, they are not skilled enough to fly a 900,000 pound aircraft at over a highly populated area. What if one of these pilots with poor manual flying skills hits a bird and actually has to fly the plane? These pilots should have been grounded.


Posted by Jetman, a resident of another community
on Nov 21, 2013 at 2:22 am

The website for the Nextgen Advisory Committee can be found here: Web Link

A roster of the Nextgen Advisory Committee members can be found here:
Web Link

A roster of the Nextgen Tactical Operations Committee can be found here:
Web Link


Posted by Linda C, a resident of Menlo Park: Fair Oaks
on Nov 21, 2013 at 10:22 am

SAFETY ISSUES / NORTH FAIR OAKS - Surf Air is conducting flights over NORTH FAIR OAKS – people here are generally working class and not very wealthy. Flights over my street include two day care homes. Pilots may or may not be fully licensed or following the guidelines. Safety oversight for small commercial companies are not the same standard as for large companies.
Also - - home atmosphere becomes toxic from abundant low flying jets ( keeping their gear adjusted – who is going to make sure of that over time for every plane ? !! )
Right – FAA be what it may – we deserve due process, safety and environmental discussions – from comments, it does seem like David against goliath.


Posted by Nancy Lowe, a resident of another community
on Nov 21, 2013 at 12:17 pm

Aircraft noise has lately become invasive and oppressive throughout the day and into the evening in the College Terrace neighborhood here in Palo Alto.


Posted by Michael G. Stogner, a resident of another community
on Nov 21, 2013 at 1:21 pm

Peter,

I agree the answer is with the Pilots, most will work with the public if they are reminded and can be safe. I had a Cessna 210 out of San Carlos for several years and I lived in Redwood Shores under the flight path.


Posted by matt, a resident of Atherton: West of Alameda
on Nov 21, 2013 at 3:46 pm

I am in a unique position here. I live on Walsh Road in Atherton, which is where a lot of the plane traffic coalesces. I am also a member of SurfAir. The histrionics here are incredible. Let's look at facts.

SurfAir flies about 10 trips in and out of SQL per day. That's it. Compare this to the Jumbo Jets -- dozens and dozens of them in a single day. Some going to SFO, others to San Jose. They all coalesce right over my backyard and it's no big deal.

Now add the dozens of small props in the same airspace -- even more on weekends. The point is, SurfAir is a DROP IN THE BUCKET compared to other planes that already exist.

People need to get over this petty stuff and realize that it's all for the greater good.


Posted by Decorum, a resident of Menlo Park: Fair Oaks
on Nov 21, 2013 at 8:06 pm

Residents are concerned and wisely so that there will be a growing increase in the number of commercial and low-flying jets over our homes , day care centers , and schools. I hope people will Keep their arrogant attitudes to themselves as we humbly try to protect our selves.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Nov 22, 2013 at 7:40 am

Decorum:

While you try to "protect" yourselves, the FAA is trying to protect everyone. Both those flying and those on the ground. If there is an accident in our skies there is an extreme likelihood that the planes/debris would land on people below. I'll take some noise over that happening any day.


Posted by caregiver, a resident of Menlo Park: Fair Oaks
on Nov 23, 2013 at 8:06 am

I live in a working class neighborhood nearby, not Atherton, and I'm directly under both flight paths. The small aircraft overhead are flying low and are way noisier than the high-altitude jumbos descending into SFO. Way noisier.

The "get over this petty stuff" comment from the Surf Air member above, who is "west of Alameda" seems particularly odd. The flight path in question seems to be roughly over Middlefield. I vote that Surf can fly over his house instead.


Posted by Julie, a resident of Atherton: other
on Nov 23, 2013 at 12:14 pm

It is not a result of Surf Air. Although that may increase an already existing problem. We have been harrassed by the loud engine sounds of low flying planes from the San Carlos Airport for months and months. I have sound recordings of the degree and frequency of these planes. I have sent email complaints---with theses sound files attached---to the appropriate San Mateo County Division. I received no reply: they had my phone, email and street address. These people know how to hide. They continue to disrupt our enjoyment of private residence....with no limits or restrictions. Something must be done. This is not the "wild west" out here where anyone can ride roughshod without consequence. Or is it. By the way, I live in Refwood City. There was no "Redwood City" listed on the Options Menu.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Nov 23, 2013 at 3:40 pm

Julie:

I'm betting the airport was there when you bought your house.


Posted by Jetman, a resident of another community
on Nov 23, 2013 at 8:09 pm

Julie:

This is the new "wild west", and the airline companies are the new railroad companies. The airline industry executives are the new robber-barons, and they can, and will, run roughshod over anyone that gets in the way of their new "NextGen" railroad in the sky.

Like the robber barons of the past, the Aircraft industry uses their influence over government to obtain favorable legislation, and appropriations of public funds.

Over the last few years the airline industry has lobbied for, and obtained, federal legislation that supersedes and exempts them from local regulation. The airline industry is answerable to no one, except the FAA, which they control through lobbyist, and revolving-door management.

In January of 2013 the FAA kicked off the roll-out of "NextGen" air traffic control at Bay Area airports. Under "NextGen" air traffic control, aircraft "coast" down from altitude at high speed along several precisely navigated approaches. The precision navigation used in the "Nextgen" system channels air traffic into several narrow, predetermined, flight paths (like railroads), and allows air traffic control to use much smaller aircraft-to-aircraft spacing (like railroad cars).


Posted by caregiver, a resident of Menlo Park: Fair Oaks
on Nov 23, 2013 at 9:14 pm

Jetman, and Peter Carpenter - can you explain why you refer to descent and coasting down? I could be wrong but my impression is, the noisiest moments are when aircraft are ascending, heading away from the airport.

I also could be wrong about whether the flight path reaches the west-of-Alameda neighborhood - but if it does, I'd expect their altitude would be considerably higher by the time the aircraft reached those foothills.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Nov 24, 2013 at 1:03 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"can you explain why you refer to descent and coasting down?"

Because all of the complaints in this thread refer to arrivals at San Carlos airport - which 90% of the time means aircraft flying towards to North (actually a heading of 297 degrees) in order to land on runway 30 (which is on a heading of 300 degrees). Departing aircraft are noisy but they generally depart to the North and climb quickly leaving a small ground noise print. When the winds shift to blowing from the South everything is turned around - but that is only 10% of the time, usually before bay area storms.


Posted by NonPilot, a resident of Menlo Park: Sharon Heights
on Nov 24, 2013 at 6:47 am

Of course the pilots on this forum have no sympathy for the citizen non-pilots. If you grew up admiring aviation science and fly planes yourself, it's no surprise that the increasing airplane noise and environmental pollution does not bother you. And make no mistake who the chief beneficiaries of the dramatic increase in air traffic are: the airline industry as well as wealthy hobbyist pilots. Their financial gains and recreational enjoyment come at our expense.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Nov 24, 2013 at 8:39 am

Nonpilot:

honestly, when you purchased a home in the a bay area which has three international airports and at least five smaller airports, did you think you wouldn't hear aircraft flying overhead? Large commercial aircraft have become quieter not louder. Did you really think when living in a highly populated area there wouldn't be "noise pollution?" Funny, I don't see anyone on here complaining about sirens which are becoming much more frequent. If you don't want to hear noise, you need to move to the country. Because complaining about airport noise is tantamount to moving in next to a hog farm and then complaining because it stinks.


Posted by noisy neighborhoods, a resident of Atherton: other
on Nov 24, 2013 at 11:19 am

I would imagine that NONE of us Atherton residents do our own lawns and the gardeners we hire use leaf blowers that EXCEED the decibels from the aircraft you are complaining about. Think about that and please get out your rakes the noise coming from your yards is REALLY annoying......because whne I bought my house there were no leaf blowers and you have all ruined the country like atmosphere I wanted when I bought my house.

So get out there and start raking....or you could stop bitching about living in the 21st century.


Posted by Julie, a resident of Atherton: other
on Nov 24, 2013 at 2:40 pm

Reply to Menlo Voter:

I was born and raised in Redwood City. I know the history of the airports. In 1954, when SFO opened their Central Passenger Terminal, they offered Excursion Flights to the general public. I was with my family on one of those flights. We were all very enthusiastic. I was 10 years old.

I know things change. They cannot remain the same. The growth in the Bay Area has benefitted us. I'm proud of being a long-term resident here. There are downsides, too, to be sure.

The airplane noise has not bothered me for 50+ years! Why now? I ask you. In the not-too-distant past, the noise was ordinary commercial airlines noise.

Now? I have small aircraft with loud motors practicing their circle turns over my roof and backyard. This is not "transportation". This very Sunday morning, it just now stopped @2:20PM. It began at 9:00AM. And here comes another one now.

Is this being bitchy?

When once I talked to someone at the San Carlos Airport complaining about how low the plane was, she asked if I could read the numbers on the wing. Some test of how low the plane was actually flying, I take it.

I am thinking that if I can read the wing numbers...I had better start running and take cover!

I think the residents of this area deserve SOME measure of peace, some degree of say-so, since we are the ones who support this community.

Last but not least, I cannot see how all of the sound vibration we are subjected to can be healthy.


Posted by Julie, a resident of Atherton: other
on Nov 24, 2013 at 2:51 pm

To Jetman:

Thanks for your comment. I really enjoyed your analysis/metaphor. So true.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Nov 24, 2013 at 3:23 pm

Julie:

I'm sorry, but in 1954 most of the Santa Clara Valley was still orchards. In addition, with the possible exception of Palo Alto, ALL of the bay areas airports predate 1954. San Carlos was built in WW II as an alternate to Half Moon Bay Airport for the military pilots that were training there to land when HMB was fogged in. Somehow I don't think the folks that lived in the area were bitching about the flights of those aircraft. They were much louder than today's aircraft by the way.

The fact is, the bay area is much more densely populated than in 1954 and along with that comes a lot of ambient noise. One only need to go into the back country to get an idea of how noisy it is or how quiet it's not. If having quiet is important to people they need to move to a location that can actually provide it or they need to learn to deal with the noise that goes along with living in a congested area.


Posted by emily, a resident of another community
on Nov 24, 2013 at 9:52 pm

If you want to talk about noise pollution, lets talk about banning leaf blowers. All day, I hear the buzz, hum, and whining of the laziest, smelliest, loudest invention of all time.

At least the airplanes are productive. I don't mind the noise. I leave near the railroad tracks and under the flight path for SFO and PA Airport. Sometimes I even see military aircraft going to/from Moffett. I don't mind them one bit. I get to see tons of interesting planes a low altitudes. It's exciting!


Posted by Julie, a resident of Atherton: other
on Nov 25, 2013 at 12:43 am

Reply to Jetman:

Quoting from your post:

"In 2011 the "Nextgen" committee lobbied for, and received, Congressional legislation allowing any changes to air routes below 3,000', near core airports, to be granted a "categorical exclusion" from any environmental assessment or environmental impact statement."

This says it all doesn't it? Their procedures are above reproach and are not subject to review. Another example of the hens guarding the hen house. In a word: self-regulating. No accountability to hinder them.

Your posts have provided factual information that I did not previously have. It's an eye opener. Thanks.


Posted by Julie, a resident of Atherton: other
on Nov 25, 2013 at 1:08 am

Menlo Voter:

Unfortunately, what you say is true. The thought of moving from an area where one is established is not a pleasant one, however. It is clear, this area has become congested. No easy solutions here.

But, if the small aircraft operating out of the local airports here are louder than Regulations permit...and their frequencies higher than common sense dictates...there should be some recourse or compromise available for the populations affected.

We will most likely have to suffer through it. At least now we are not suffering in silence: there are many people whose quality of life is being impacted. I am glad to see a public discourse on it. At least now, those of us who are impacted, know we are not alone. We will no longer need to ask: "Is it me?...or is it noisy in here?"


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Nov 25, 2013 at 6:21 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"if the small aircraft operating out of the local airports here are louder than Regulations permit." They are not since no such regulations exist.

".and their frequencies higher than common sense dictates." Whose common sense?

You live in a metropolitan area with lots of airports - there will be airplane noise just like we have freeways and there is road noise.


Posted by Julie, a resident of Atherton: other
on Nov 25, 2013 at 12:29 pm

Reply: Peter Carpenter

Your answer to what I said is precisely the point:

"if the small aircraft operating out of the local airports here are louder than Regulations permit." , I wrote. "They are not since no such regulations exist.", you write.

No such regulations exist. My question is: why shouldn't there be some regulation.

Your comparison to freeway road noise is imperfect since there exist many laws regarding the operation of motor vehicles,...speed, etc., And those freeway cars are not doing wheelies on my property, unlike the aircraft that circle over my house...making repeated sound-loops for hours on end.

I have nothing against airplanes or airports. Noise is a reality we need to adjust to...in all forms...I know. And I admit, I don't care for it much in any of its forms. But I think there are unnecessary excesses that could be adjusted, if the people who manage these things cared about the overall welfare of everyone.

Maybe the question is not ....noise or no noise. The question is: how much noise and how often.


Posted by Diane, a resident of another community
on Nov 25, 2013 at 1:18 pm

I have a perfectly reasonable solution to this problem. Since there are quite a few people who have posted that the noise generated by these planes is acceptable, it makes sense to have the flight path changed to fly over these individuals houses. They have already issued their consent by their posts, so they should have no complaints to this solution. After all, the airports have been here a long time, blah blah blah...


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Nov 25, 2013 at 1:23 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

These flights already fly over my house so Diane's solution is fine.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Nov 25, 2013 at 2:47 pm

Many of the aircraft on approach to San Carlos also fly over my house so, no problem with them to continue doing so as far as I'm concerned.

Julie: unless someone can figure out a way for a propeller tip to not break the sound barrier when it's spinning (that's most of the noise you're hearing) regulation of same would be a pointless exercise. that's why none exist.


Posted by Julie, a resident of Atherton: other
on Nov 25, 2013 at 4:04 pm

To Diane: you have given me my first big chuckle of the day!
To Menlo Voter: to me it sounds more like engine/motor sound. But it could be what you said. It makes sense that the sounds can't be stopped.

To All With Whom I've Exchanged Posts:

It is apparent that you know much more about aviation than I do. I have found the information helpful and interesting. But to tell me WHY my thumb hurts when it is hit by a hammer doesn't make the throbbing stop. And it gives the holder of the hammer no incentive to stop. "Your thumb is going to hurt...because we need to hammer...and it's unfortunate that that is where your thumb is.."....is the justification we get.

There can be "no excess" when there are no parameters set for measurement and no suggestions forthcoming to ameliorate what has obviously become a problem for more than just a few people. The way I see it: ..too much noise is too much noise. Period. But there can NEVER be "too much noise" in a discussion that does not recognize the definition "too much" as being valid. How many businesses do you know of (I assume there are flight schools at our small airports)...who can operate their businesses with "no regulation"? ...and no measurement of activity. Or for that matter how it affects neighboring communities.

I don't get it. It's just life in the big city, I guess. Time to invest in a pair of regulation-grade ear protectors.


Posted by Resident, a resident of another community
on Nov 25, 2013 at 4:25 pm

I am a Palo Alto resident who is at the 17 mile marker for the SFO incoming traffic. This is the point at which the west to east planes make the turn up the north approach to SFO. The size and number of planes has increased greatly in the last two years. The trans-Pacific planes are extremely large and carry many passengers. Delta now has an hourly LA to SF plane. The planes arriving in the dark are flying very low. The traffic from the Palo Alto Airport has to fly lower altitude. Surf Air is in this traffic lane preparing to go into its approach for San Carlos. I view this as the air freeway interchange. It is very busy.
The peninsula in general is subject to Senate Bill 375 for Long Term Planning to increase housing on transportation routes - in this case the Caltrain route from San Jose to San Francisco. Much is going into building high rises and high density housing on this route. I believe that this is going to affect the small airports in the route - Palo Alto and San Carlos. Since Surf Air is commercial jet it should be classified separately from small prop planes.
It should consider using the San Jose Airport which has a private section where Google keeps its planes. I believe that Oracle also has their plane(s) there. I think that the overall high density, high rise building currently planned / in process is going to determine how air traffic is managed. This should be part of the conversation since Surf Sir does fly over Palo Alto. It is a very noisy plane. Does it need some type engineering fix for that problem?


Posted by Jetman, a resident of another community
on Nov 25, 2013 at 5:46 pm

Who was here first? The FAA only just "broke ground" (their words) for their "Nextgen" highways in the sky in January of 2013.

"FAA Plan Seeks More Direct Air Routes in Bay Area"
SF Gate ~ Tuesday, January 15, 2013 Web Link

The FAA claims these "highways" in the sky, will reduce noise. What these "highways" will actually do, is increase the total amount of noise, but concentrate it over a fewer number of people. At the end of the day, "NextGen" air traffic control is not a technical solution to the problem of aircraft noise, it is a political solution, and all of the FAA's bluster about reducing noise is just camouflage.

The reduction of aircraft noise was never really the goal of these new highways in the sky. The real goal was to open vast amounts of airspace to a new industry. An industry operating a new type of aircraft. A new type of aircraft whose operations are fundamentally incompatible with piloted commercial air traffic. The FAA calls this new type of aircraft an "unmanned aerial system" or UAS. Everyone else calls them drones.

"FAA Told to Make Room for Drones in U.S. Skies"
USA Today ~ February 7, 2012 Web Link

The FAA's drone plan, has been an active topic of discussion among private pilots, for several years now.

"Drones a Coming Crisis for General Avaition"
Flying Magazine ~ February 7, 2012 Web Link


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Nov 25, 2013 at 6:00 pm

Julie:

believe me flight schools are hardly unregulated. Google "Airman's Information Manual" and you will see a tome that is at least 3" thick in its printed edition. Not all of it applies to flight schools obviously, but a lot of it does. It is the regulations that all of us fly by. There are tons of them. Flight schools are heavily regulated. As I said before, you can't regulate the noise aircraft make any more than you can regulate the physical laws of the universe.


Posted by Jetman, a resident of another community
on Nov 25, 2013 at 6:18 pm

The aircraft industry can produce prop drive aircraft that are almost silent, when they have to:

The single engined Lockheed YO-3A was designed to a U.S. Army specification of 1968, which called for an observation aircraft that would be acoustically undetectable from the ground when flying at an altitude of 1,200 feet. Web Link

They actually have a YO-3A on display in the Hiller Aviation Museum... at the San Carlos Airport!


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Nov 25, 2013 at 6:30 pm

Jetman:

what was its sound signature during take off? Also, the military is famous for producing aircraft and other vehicles that can do all kinds of things, but are not and would not be even a little bit economically viable in mass production.


Posted by Jetman, a resident of another community
on Nov 26, 2013 at 12:22 am

Palo Alto has the heaviest commercial air traffic of any community south of SFO, and is the least prepared to cope with the expected increase in traffic, brought on by the forthcoming "NextGen" roll-out.

Under prevailing westerly winds, three out of five arrival routes for commercial aircraft bound for SFO, cross over Palo Alto on their way to the airport. Aircraft arriving from the north, west, and south all converge on an area 3,000' above highway 101 between Embarcadero and Willow roads, to begin their final approach for landing at SFO.

Several communities north of the San Mateo County border have preexisting agreements, or FAA policies, in place that will help limit any increase in commercial traffic over San Mateo County. In 2012 Anna Eshoo negotiated a policy agreement with the FAA to limit commercial traffic over Woodside, to no less than 8,000' whenever possible (note: this policy is frequently ignored)

The SFO Noise Abatement Office has "peppered" the Peninsula, north and west, of SFO with 20+ automated "noise monitoring stations" to continuously monitor aircraft noise. Menlo Park has one station. Palo Alto has none.

In the late 1990s Palo Alto Mayor Gary Fazzino asked the airport's Roundtable group to allow Palo Alto to be represented on the group, but Mayor Fazzino's request for membership in the group was rebuffed.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Nov 26, 2013 at 12:22 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Re the Army's YO-3A I was a project officer for that program in its initial stages that were conducted by ARPA. I was silent within 50 ft at takeoff, carried two people and flew very slow.

Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Nov 19, 2013 at 9:58 am
Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

I was a project manager on the development of the world's first silent airplane (Prize Crew QT-1) developed by ARPA


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Nov 26, 2013 at 7:42 am

Doesn't sound like the YO-3A was much of a "travelling machine."


Posted by Enough, a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Nov 26, 2013 at 8:12 am

The aircraft noise has most definitely increased over Menlo Park in the last several months, and I am glad that this is being discussed. The most bothersome being the smaller dark blue planes that are buzzing my house headed north, parallel to Middlefield Road. The offending dark blue planes are noisier, flying low, and are on a schedule. They are a new addition to the air traffic - they were not here before. And for all of you who criticize us for complaining, I find it hard to believe that you claim to work for our community, when so often you campaign for things that are NOT good for our community. More and more density is not good - in our housing, in our office space, and in the airspace. How long will it take before one of these low-flying planes crashes, again, into our houses or schools?


Posted by resident, a resident of another community
on Nov 26, 2013 at 8:21 am

In Palo Alto we have an on-going controversy about building a two building high rise in the Paige Mill / El Camino corridor. This is the same company that is going to build a two building high rise at the Redwood City site - formerly the Malibu raceway next to 101. This controversy is well documented on the Palo Alto On-Line system which is the same as this system. Managing the air space is both a concern from the ground-up as well as the air-down. At some point here the problem appears both for Santa Clara and San Mateo Counties - a concern that should be addressed at the government level since the two concepts are running on separate discussions but collectively have a big impact on how projects are approved and where they are approved - in the vicinity of government directed air lanes.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Nov 26, 2013 at 8:28 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"n the vicinity of government directed air lanes."

Neither of these proposed developments is within 900 vertical feet of the minimum VFR altitudes or within 4000 vertical feet of an IFR airway/approach route.


Posted by resident, a resident of another community
on Nov 26, 2013 at 8:56 am

So it says in fine print. At 4:30 AM the first trans-pacific jumbo jet that has been in the sir for over 10 hours passes over - it is dark and or fog and they cannot see where they are. A jumbo jet covers a lot of air space. Meanwhile at day light some trainer plane at Palo Alto airport is taking off - circling the area at a very low altitude. There are specific time of the day when the commute traffic in the air is an on-going event. The range of activity covers a lot of territory and a lot of altitude variations. Meanwhile the San Jose Airport is equal distance to the south and has its own jumbo jet from Asia activity. It is all observable. I can see it and hear it - if I go downtown PA it is observable.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Nov 26, 2013 at 9:06 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Relax resident - the FAA provides positive separation of commercial aircraft in the entire Bay Area. Millions of flights to date and not a single mid air collision - a much better record than what happens on our roads every day.


Posted by Julie, a resident of Atherton: other
on Nov 26, 2013 at 11:42 am

"Millions of flights to date and not a single mid air collision" you say.

Maybe the definitive 2-words here are..."to date". Conditions have changed and will probably keep heading in the same direction: that is: more planes and more flights.

We keep pushing the envelope and then when unnecessary accidents occur we wonder why and then establish committee on investigative committee to tell us what was the shortsightedness or carelessness that caused yet another sad tradjedy.

No, I don't think this is a good time to relax at all.

Re: to the person who posted about building density. Yes on that!! Where are our City Planners and just what are they doing with their time and expertise! In the 70's it was all about "open space". I was involved in a construction project where the builders needed to provide a certain amount of open-air square feet in ratio to the amount of residential square feet. So that units would not be stacked and jammed together. Zoning laws were adhered to and only "variances", if approved could change requirements. Our City Planners and Building Departments are approving EVERYthing---as evidenced by what you see when you drive down El Camino. Awful architecture and buildings which should be torn down, not built up. No concern for aesthetics. The more units = the more money.

More, more, more seems to be the "manifest destiny" these days.


Posted by resident, a resident of another community
on Nov 26, 2013 at 12:12 pm

Atherton - as background to my comments the Paris Air Controllers went on strike in Mid-June. A large group of family members were eventually able to fly to Paris on a Saturday. Problem was the air control system is 50 years old and the ability to control both major airlines and support airlines was becoming inoperable. They are now in an upgrade to the air control system. Two weeks later on the return flight there was a baggage handling strike specific to the Paris to SFO flight due the number of people from many countries passing through that hub. Luggage was piled on the tarmac untended. In summer the Asian flight that went down passed over my house to make it's turn into the north approach - it was too low, too slow, and wobbled. I have had this conversation with SFO. As you may remember the air control system was going though problems at that time. It is unclear if the pilots had to deal with too much traffic -but they were judged as undertrained for the plane they were flying.
Bottom line is that you have a 80/20 percentage of fully trained pilots in commercial planes, and lower percentage of trained pilots in single pilot planes. The air control system has limited capability to discern how the stack up is occurring back at the 17 mile marker. That determines how the planes are coordinated at the 13 mile marker. Any assumption that everyone knows what they are doing is in error. Increasing the load with a commercial airline running out of San Carlos is pushing the window of risk. Surf can accomplish more if running out of San Jose Airport on the private side.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Nov 26, 2013 at 1:28 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

To date the sun has always come up but Julie isn't sure about tomorrow.


Posted by resident, a resident of another community
on Nov 26, 2013 at 1:37 pm

I alluded to the security issue above - have noted that a drug bust occurred at San Carlos - shipment of pot on a private airline. Pay attention to the dynamics here - follow the money. Make sure that you have all of the OBVIOUS angels covered.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Nov 26, 2013 at 1:42 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

The entire Bay Area is Class B airspace:
"The first operating rule that separates Class B from Class C and D airspace is as simple as ABC - Always Be Cleared. Not only must you be in two-way communication with ATC before you enter Class B airspace, you can't fly in the airspace until a controller gives you a clearance to do so. Don't make assumptions on this matter, either. If you don't hear the controller use your airplane's N-number and say "cleared to enter the Class B airspace," ask for that clearance before you cross any broad blue line that depicts the Class B boundaries on a sectional chart.

Given the necessity that you must receive a clearance, the requirement for a two-way radio is obvious, but FAR 91.131 also spells out another ABC - an Active transponder Beacon with Mode C (altitude reporting). Class B airspace is simply too busy to routinely allow an aircraft into the mix without a Mode C transponder."

The result is that every airplane operating in the Bay Area Class B airspace is actively controlled.

You have a million times greater probability of being hit by a car than being struck by an airplane.


Posted by resident, a resident of another community
on Nov 26, 2013 at 2:31 pm

If the Asiana flight was actively controlled then they would have know that it was in trouble before it approached the sea wall. We have a number of planes that approach at SFO but think they cannot land so ask for a second try. Those are mostly foreign air carriers that are not familiar with the airport. The events in August pointed up all of the high risk factors on commercial carriers who are presumably trained. We seem to have a plane crash at the Palo Alto Airport every year - people take off in the fog and go the wrong way - not actively controlled. We have enough published stories where everyone should know what they are suppose to do but don't do it. We are talking now about a small plane that is entering a highly dynamic airspace and banking on doing that on a regular basis. It is a matter of determining the risk and figuring out how to reduce the risk - move to the San Jose Airport. That seems like a good business decision.


Posted by Garrett, a resident of another community
on Nov 26, 2013 at 3:17 pm

With all the wealth that is being generated around here, Surf Air sounds like a good alternative to the SFO-SJC-OAK mess, growing air travelers. Checking out their website, good deal to me if you have the money. The rest of us will get stuck in those cattle cars with the cramped seats.


Posted by Julie, a resident of Atherton: other
on Nov 26, 2013 at 3:24 pm

Replying to Peter Carpenter:

As in the musical "Annie", if you choose to believe that "The sun will come up tomorrow", that's fine.

I am not like the people in primitive cultures who actually WERE afraid that the sun would not come up the next day.

I'm not worried about the sun because, thank goodness, we are not in charge of that.

No, I am more like one of the "Three Little Pigs". I am like the one the others laughed at because he built his house with bricks.


Posted by Enough, a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Nov 26, 2013 at 3:44 pm

3:41pm and one of those dark blue noisy planes just buzzed my house, flying north parallel to Middlefield Road. I am on board to fight against this.


Posted by neighbor, a resident of another community
on Nov 26, 2013 at 4:00 pm

This thread has run its course.

Here's a scoop: Planes are going to continue to land in San Carlos and at SFO. The airports are not going to move, but you can. If you don't want to hear airplanes, trains, police/fire engines --- or, you don't want people walking or parking their cars on the public streets in front of your house (a persistent Atherton complaint --- you can move to a rural area.

With all that is going on in the real world these days, how about being thankful (tis the season, after all) for being able to live in Atherton? Even without the horrible threats to the neighborhood, the value of your property keeps doubling.


Posted by Julie, a resident of Atherton: other
on Nov 26, 2013 at 4:04 pm

To: Enough

Good for you !

Oh yeah, aren't they just having a field day? I was downtown Redwood City when I saw a plane flying around the City Hall dome...just as casual and cavaliere as could be. Much too low. WHAT more do these people think they can get away with!


Posted by Julie, a resident of Atherton: other
on Nov 26, 2013 at 4:20 pm

Neighbor:

The Subject is not "people who live in Atherton."It is not about their properties "doubling in value". (For the record, I live in Redwood City.)

I am grateful that the Atherton residents have brought attention to this growing problem. Atherton residents are not the only ones affected. A wide geographical area is suffering because of the "in your face" behavior of the airports' refusal to assume the responsibility which should be theirs.

I guess this thread is not over just yet.




Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Nov 26, 2013 at 7:02 pm

Sorry Julie, but the airport is never going to assume responsibility for the physical laws of the universe. Airplanes make noise (propeller driven anyway) because the tips of their propellers exceed the speed of sound. You can't legislate the speed of sound nor is it the airport or pilots' responsibility to control something beyond their control.


Posted by Julie, a resident of Atherton: other
on Nov 26, 2013 at 8:29 pm

Menlo Voter:

I do understand what you are saying.

But can't the airport limit the amount of flights? Fewer flights in and out = less traffic noise. I don't mean SFO. I mean the county airports. Are there no areas of activity that could be lessened?

Weekdays are less noisy. But, oh my goodness, weekends are the unending comings and goings of air flight. It works on the nerves, you know. All the more because we know we have absolutely no control over how much of it we will have to put up with. It distracts us from all other activities we are trying to focus on. Sometimes you don't feel well when a little quiet would be helpful. Not a chance.

This is not just theoretical complaining. There are practical issues. How it affects people. It causes discomfort. Sometimes I get dizzy from it.

But mostly it is just a huge annoyance. And to think that any one institution could cause that much annoyance or discomfort and not even care, is what I find difficult to accept.

I suppose that to think anyone will sit up and take notice is just spitting in the wind.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Nov 26, 2013 at 11:03 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Some facts for those interested in being better informed:
"Airspace Structure and Air Traffic Control
in the San Francisco Bay Area


Airspace Structure. The Federal Aviation Administration has established an airspace structure that provides a framework for regulating the responsibilities of different air traffic control facilities. The airspace structure is basically divided into controlled and uncontrolled airspace, according to six classes of vertical air space.

Class A airspace is controlled airspace above altitude 18,000 feet mean sea level (MSL) (to "Flight Level 600", approximately 60,000 feet MSL).
Class B airspace is controlled airspace -- from the surface to 10,000 feet MSL -- surrounding high-capacity commercial service airports (e.g., San Francisco International).

Class C airspace is controlled airspace -- from the surface to 4,000 feet MSL -- surrounding lower-activity commercial service airports (e.g., Oakland International and San Jose International) and some military airports.

Class D airspace is controlled airspace -- from the surface to 2,500 feet MSL -- surrounding airports with an air traffic control tower (e.g., Hayward, Livermore, Palo Alto, Reid-Hillview, and San Carlos airports). All aircraft operating within classes A, B, C, and D airspace must be in contact with the air traffic control tower responsible for that airspace.

Class E is any controlled airspace not classified as A, B, C, or D. The area of a class E airspace is configured to encompass all instrument approach procedures and low-altitude federal airways. (Federal airways, or Victor airways, are corridors of airspace eight miles wide that extend upward from 1,200 above ground level to 18,000 feet MSL.) The entire Metropolitan Bay Area falls within a single area of class E airspace. (Note: some class D airspaces revert to class E during periods when the air traffic control tower is closed, e.g., Hayward airport.) Only aircraft conducting instrument flights are required to be in contact with air traffic control when operating in class E airspace. While aircraft conducting visual flights in class E airspace are not required to be in radio communication with air traffic control, such flights can only be conducted if minimum visibility and cloud ceilings exist.

Class G is uncontrolled airspace -- any area not classified A, B, C, D, or E. No contact with air traffic control is required.

National Park Service areas, U.S. Fish and Wildlife areas, and U.S. Forest, Wilderness, and Primitive areas are not part of the the U.S. airspace structure, but are nevertheless shown on aeronautical charts. While aircraft operations over these areas are not specifically restricted, aircraft are requested to maintain a minimum altitude of 2,000 feet above ground level.
Air Traffic Control in the Bay Area. Aircraft arriving and departing within the Bay Area are controlled by different control facilities. The class B airspace surrounding San Francisco International is controlled by the Bay Approach Control facility. The class C airspace surrounding Oakland International is controlled by the air traffic control tower at the airport. All aircraft transiting above class B and C airspace in the Bay Area are controlled by the Oakland Air Route Traffic Control Center (ARTCC). This facility controls aircraft in a large multi-state area, providing pilots with information on altitude and aircraft separation, as well as route guidance.

FAA Air Traffic Regulations. Federal Aviation Regulations (FARs) are contained in the Code of Federal Regulations, title 14. Part 91 contains "General Operating and Flight Rules" and Part 93 contains "Special Air Traffic Rules and Airport Traffic Patterns. Minimum safe flying altitudes are defined in Part 91 section 119 (14 CFR 91.119):

91.119 Minimum safe altitudes: General
Except when necessary for takeoff or landing, no person may operate an aircraft below the following altitudes:

(a) Anywhere. An altitude allowing, if a power unit fails, an emergency landing without undue hazard to persons or property on the surface.

(b) Over congested areas. Over any congested area of a city, town, or settlement, or over any open air assembly of persons, an altitude of 1,000 feet above the highest obstacle within a horizontal radius of 2,000 feet of the aircraft.

(c) Over other than congested areas. An altitude of 500 feet above the surface, except over open water or sparsely populated areas. In those cases, the aircraft may not be operated closer than 500 feet to any person, vessel, vehicle, or structure.

(d) Helicopters. Helicopters may be operated at less than the minimums prescribed in paragraph (b) or (c) of this section if the operation is conducted without hazard to persons or property on the surface. In addition, each person operating a helicopter shall comply with any routes or altitudes specifically prescribed for helicopters by the Administrator."


Posted by Laughing, a resident of Menlo Park: Fair Oaks
on Nov 26, 2013 at 11:43 pm

Oh, and I am sure these rich over privileged spoiled Athertonians could care less who THEY bother when they fly in or out of ANY airport! Give me a break! they buy a Tony house in between three major airports and suddenly they are the victims. Please!!! Just nonsense!!!!


Posted by Jetman, a resident of another community
on Nov 26, 2013 at 11:46 pm

Julie... please don't feed the trolls. Web Link


Posted by Jetman, a resident of another community
on Nov 27, 2013 at 12:16 am

Last year Almanac reporter Dave Boyce wrote an excellent article about "NextGen" air traffic control entitled "New Technology Promises Less Noise from Jet Engines, but to Whose Ears?" in which he asked FAA spokesman Ian Gregor many good questions, but received few answers.

"New Technology Promises Less Noise from Jet Engines, but to Whose Ears?"
The Almanac ~ August 29, 2012 Web Link


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Nov 27, 2013 at 6:57 am

Julie:

the county cannot control the volume of traffic at San Carlos. The FAA will not allow them to do so. A number of years ago a bunch of folks in Redwood Shores were up in arms about the noise and the county tried to take some action reducing flights or restricting hours. The FAA told them forget it and because the county has taken federal funds for the airport the county cannot do anything about it.

Jetman: pot this is kettle, your black.


Posted by LifeisNoisy, a resident of another community
on Nov 27, 2013 at 8:51 am

If California had a high speed rail system, then that would cut down on many of the flights, especially the smaller aircraft. Now what can be done about leaf blowers, lawn mowers, motorcycles, garbage trucks, car horns, helicopters, circular saws, jack hammers, crows? Buy ear plugs?


Posted by peninsula resident, a resident of Menlo-Atherton High School
on Nov 27, 2013 at 9:32 am

> If California had a high speed rail system, then that would cut down on many of the flights, especially the smaller aircraft.

Oh gawd. High Speed Rail will have virtually no impact on flights (or traffic for that matter, a lie HSR and it's minions continue to trumpet) for several reasons, including:

1) HSR won't be price competitive, unless taxpayers are forced to subsidize HSR, which violates Prop 1a.

2) flights can go to/from many, many more towns and cities than HSR. HSR isn't going to Half Moon Bay, Stockton, Lake Tahoe, Santa Rosa, Santa Cruz, Monterey, Redwood, Reno, Portland, Salt Lake City and on and on and on.


Posted by Matt, a resident of Atherton: West of Alameda
on Nov 27, 2013 at 9:42 pm

If California added a high speed railway, then all the folks on this blog would complain about increased noise and danger from trains.

Next we would get more cars, bringing new complaints about noise, pollution, and offensive bumper stickers.

Then we would all walk and bike, bringing new complaints about squeaks from shoes or clicking from bike wheels.

Notice a common theme: people love to complain. Sadly, our local politicians have so few meaningful things to do that they actually listen to this nonsense.


Posted by Jetman, a resident of another community
on Nov 28, 2013 at 12:38 am

Looks like the communities of Prospect Park, and Brooklyn are also suffering the ill effects of the FAA's disastrous "NextGen" air traffic system. The FAA promised "NextGen" would bring quieter skies, but "NextGen" is delivering the just the opposite to Prospect Park and Brooklyn... more noise!

Prospect Park Quiet Skies Website: Web Link

Planes are flying so low over Prospect Park that the FAA, and the Mayor quietly had a flock geese in a local park gassed to death for fear they could bring down a jet. Local citizens had to file a freedom of information request to solve the mystery of the mass die off. Meanwhile... huge tracts of land in the mid-peninsula, along the western shore of San Francisco Bay, are being redeveloped into natural wetlands, with the hope of attracting large numbers of migratory birds. How is that going to work?

Activists in Prospect Park/Brooklyn were also able to obtain an FAA Powerpoint in which they admits "NextGen" produces MORE noise. Web Link




Posted by Jetman, a resident of another community
on Nov 28, 2013 at 12:56 am

Looks like "NextGen" is not working out very well in Seattle either.

Seattle Quiet Skies Website: Web Link


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Nov 28, 2013 at 1:16 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Actually Jetman, as usual, misstates the facts.

NextGen is undergoing a wonderful public comment period in the SeaTac area and the reference he gives is to part of that dialogue and has NOTHING to do with the as yet to be determined outcome. NextGen approaches, which involve gradual coasting descents rather than a series of higher power level flight levels followed by quick step downs will be both quieter and more efficient. Hint - with airplanes quieter is more efficient and airlines really do like to be more efficient.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Nov 28, 2013 at 2:36 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Some more facts:
The 1990 Airport Noise and Capacity Act, 49 U.S.C. 47521, et seq., took noise abatement policy making out of the hands of local airports and placed approval authority exclusively in the hands of the FAA.


Posted by resident, a resident of another community
on Nov 29, 2013 at 3:06 pm

Anything approved in 1990 needs obvious update to coordinate with the growth in the bay area since that time, including the growth in the size and traffic at SFO. We are in a mega-growth mode now. Palo Alto is at the "arrival" side of the equation. Relatives in the San Bruno area are in the "departure" side of the equation. You have more, bigger planes now and more housing. I think a challenge to the FAA order should be part of the current upgrades to the overall decision regarding flight paths.
Another qualifier is that the San Jose Airport is a "destination airport" while SFO is a HUB airport for both national and international travel which means it has 24 hour activity.


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Nov 29, 2013 at 4:00 pm

To Jetman:

Thanks for the useful links you have provided, including this one. Very factual/informative. Very alarming: the conclusions reached by The World Health Council.

Web Link


Posted by Gwen Books, a resident of Menlo Park: Fair Oaks
on Nov 30, 2013 at 12:07 pm

Please join us to share your comments and complaints- I agree it is bothersome and we have formed a community group to modify the flight path. The FAA is working with us to reduce the noise and modify the path.
Disruptive Airplane Noise Over Our Neighborhoods
PLEASE JOIN US IN A CONVERSATION
December 9th at 6PM Holbrook-Palmer Park, Atherton
Did you know:
Your home is under (or near) a flight path that allows noisy aircraft to land at San Carlos Airport (KSQL) at any time of day or night.
Surf Airlines, a charter members only airline startup, flies over (or near) your home and cur- rently lands 7 times per day. They will have 10 flights each day starting on December 9th.
Surf Airlines is planning to expand service to more cities that will result in even more flights over our neighborhoods each and every day, including weekends.
Why are you receiving this notice?
A large and growing group of your neighbors are working to solve the noise problem related to Surf Air, and we want you to stay informed, and get involved. Atherton City Council has formed a sub committe to work with residents of Menlo Park, NFO, Atherton, Redwood City, Palo Alto and any other communities interested in helping. The mayors of Atherton and Menlo Park are personally involved and we have additional support from San Mateo County.
Why You Should Care
Excessive noise is not healthy, regardless of whether it occurs from vehicle traffic, leaf blowers or aircraft. In addition, aircraft noise decreases your property value and creates a harsher environment for those that work at home or want to enjoy their back yards. Aircraft flying the exact same route ten times a day poses a higher safety risk for anyone living near the flight path, or attending one of the many nearby schools.
See the map on the reverse side for how you may be affected. What You Can Do To Help
It's easy. Voice your concerns, let your opinions be heard. You can do that by the following:
Sign the petition: Web Link
Call the San Carlos Airport Noise Hotline: 650-573-2666
Join the conversation on Nextdoor.com: Web Link
Attend the upcoming community meeting where representatives from Surf Air, San Carlos Airport, the Mayors from Atherton and Mentlo Park, and residents will discuss the problem.
When: December 9th, 6 to 8 PM
Where: The Pavillion at Holbrook-Palmer Park, 150 Watkins Ave, Atherton
Get involved. Stay Informed.


Posted by Michael G. Stogner, a resident of another community
on Nov 30, 2013 at 3:34 pm

That plane is noisy, much more than most I heard it this morning and wasn't even close to it. Bay approach should help. Good luck


Posted by matt, a resident of Atherton: West of Alameda
on Nov 30, 2013 at 9:04 pm

There are dozens if not hundreds of other flights that come in and out of SQL, Palo, SFO, San Jose, and other local airports every day. SurfAir flights are a drop in the bucket compared to other flights that have existed for years and will continue to exist. It's blatantly unfair to single them out -- but they're an easy target because their planes are marked and identifiable.

I bet that most of these noise complaints don't even correspond to actual SurfAir departures and landings. Have any of our town officials released data on that?


Posted by Resident, a resident of Atherton: other
on Nov 30, 2013 at 9:04 pm

Thank you for keeping people informed about Surf Air. Looking at their website, It looks like starting Dec. 9th 20 flights a day will be coming in to San Carlos and 20 departing. Surf Air has 6000 people on it's waiting list. They can fly as many flights as they want into San Carlos. They went from 4 to 6 to 8 to 10 and now 20 as of December 9th. To accomadate the 6000 people expect 30,40,50 or? flights a day. Their Pilatus plane is extremely noisy and flies too low to recover in case of an emergency. I would like to hear from some pilots or aviation experts if the landing strip at San Carlos is safe for a 10,000 lb. plane with a 53 ft. wingspan to land on a 2500 ft. long, 75 ft. wide landing strip. Do they have enough room to do a go around if necessary? It seems like a little cross wind allows very little time to adjust on a 75 ft. wide runway. Also at a 1200 ft. flying altitude if there is an engine loss how much time would the pilot have to go through their emergency checklist and find a place to land. While the FAA requires a minimum altitude of only 1000 ft. It also requires the plane to operate at all times in a safe manner. Perhaps flying over the bay and freeway would be a safer route. Any experts out there.


Posted by Resident, a resident of Atherton: other
on Nov 30, 2013 at 9:10 pm

As a matter of fact. The director of operations at San Carlos said 32-34% of all noise complaints received are specifically about Surf Air. That was when they were flying 6 flights a day. Do the math at 20 flights a day.


Posted by Resident, a resident of Atherton: other
on Nov 30, 2013 at 9:17 pm

For those that think I should have known better when I bought my home near an Airport, I did, What I didn't count on was a commercial Airline using San Carlos a general aviation airport as a destination Airport.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Nov 30, 2013 at 9:45 pm

"What I didn't count on was a commercial Airline using San Carlos a general aviation airport as a destination Airport."

Then shame on you as nothing precludes or precluded anyone from commercial operations at San Carlos. If you didn't count on that then you gambled and lost. Just so you know, commercial operations have been happening at San Carlos for quite some time. That would be the King Airs you see and hear landing there. Just not to the level at which they are today.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Nov 30, 2013 at 9:53 pm

resident:

"fly too low to recover in case of emergency"? That is totally absurd. I would have to spend hours training you in flying and flight operations in order for you to understand how absurd that statement is. The Pilatus can land in less than 1000 feet. I haven't researched the crosswind rating of the Pilatus, but I have landed in Piper aircraft at their max allowable crosswind at San Carlos and I had plenty of room, because I landed on the centerline like any competent professional pilot would.


Posted by Resident, a resident of Atherton: other
on Nov 30, 2013 at 10:35 pm

Don't spend hours training me, Just explain to everyone where that 10,000 lb plane is going to land if it loses its engine over Palo Alto or Menlo Park.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Nov 30, 2013 at 10:48 pm

"Just explain to everyone where that 10,000 lb plane is going to land if it loses its engine over Palo Alto or Menlo Park."

the same place the million pound airplanes landing at SFO are going to land if they lose their engines.

There's a reason the FAA allows the Pilatus single engine aircraft to be used for commercial purposes - it's extremely reliable. The likelihood of a Pilatus losing an engine is infentisimily small. You're far more likely to be injured by a car crash than you are by one of these planes falling on you.


Posted by Resident, a resident of Atherton: other
on Nov 30, 2013 at 11:10 pm

Key point being engine(s),multiple, they can continue to fly and land if they lose an engine and they're not flying 20 flights a day 1000 ft. over Menlo Park.


Posted by resident, a resident of another community
on Dec 1, 2013 at 10:01 am

In the SF Chronicle today - Matier & Ross they confirm that the air traffic at SFO has increased greatly and that is a planned event. A number of airlines have switched from Oakland to SFO. We know that in PA as they are coming in directly over our head on a continual basis. The FAA did not have to deal with that in 1990 when they thought up their rules.

Specific to Menlo Park the SJ Mercury says there is a major high rise complex planned for 101 and Marsh Road. You can add to that a major high rise at Redwood City-101 on the former Malibu Raceway.
Atherton's plan to have Surf come down 101 may need more coordination than expected. Suggest that Atherton is the only place with no high rises - how about a nice high rise complex? Unless you want to include the Menlo Park as your contribution - but no tax base for you.
Bottom line is that development on the ground city by city are not being coordinated with the powers to be for transportation - both on the ground and in the air. Need to get the San Mateo county powers to be involved.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 1, 2013 at 10:15 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

California law provides for a county airport land us ec omission which establishes an airport land use area for each airport and the heights limits within that area. None of the mentioned developments lie within the San Carlos Airport's land use area."The purpose of an Airport Land Use Commission (ALUC) is to conduct airport land use compatibility planning. ALUCs protect public health, safety, and welfare by ensuring the orderly expansion of airports and the adoption of land use measures that minimize the public's exposure to excessive noise and safety hazards within areas around public airports to the extent that these areas are not already devoted to incompatible uses. The statutes governing ALUCs are set forth in Division 9, Part 1, Chapter 4, Article 3.5, Sections 21670 – 21679.5 of the California Public Utilities Code (PUC)."


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 1, 2013 at 10:18 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"The ALUC is a statutorily created, quasi-legislative, public administrative agency that is responsible for conducting airport land use compatibility planning and preventing the creation of new noise and safety problems in the vicinity of public use airports. Pursuant to PUC Sections 21670 (a) and (b), an airport land use commission shall be established for the purposes of ensuring the orderly expansion of airports and the adoption of appropriate land use measures. California's airport land use compatibility planning is unique because the legislature has created ALUCs, which are separate from both the airport operators and the local agencies (cities and counties) in which those airports are located."


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 1, 2013 at 10:24 am

Key point: the likelihood of an engine failure in a Pilatus is infinitesimally small. Commercial aircraft are maintained to very high standards. As I said, the people under the approach path to San Carlos are far more likely to be injured by a car crash or other accident than they are to have a plane fall on them. There are far more aircraft landing and passing over Menlo Park and Atherton in bound to SFO on any given day than 20.

A search of the NTSB accident database shows a total of 15 accidents in the last 30 years for this type of aircraft in the entire United States. Only 2 of those were related to loss of engine power. Two in thirty years. Neither of the two engine failures in thirty years resulted in injury or fatality. One is more likely to be struck by lightening than they are to die by having one of these aircraft fall on them. It's a non-issue.


Posted by resident, a resident of another community
on Dec 1, 2013 at 11:14 am

August - I saw the Asiana flight as it came over my head in PA, too low, too slow, and wobbled when it made the turn up the northbound arrival path to SFO. Suggest you check if Surf was in the air on that date and time in this vicinity. The foreign pilots were not trained on that plane and were unfamiliar with the SFO airport. They were too low so possibly in the San Carlos incoming path and panicked. No one is talking here because San Carlos could lose it's grants, and Surf Air it's business. Suggest you check out that data point - there is more to that crash than anyone is saying.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 1, 2013 at 2:54 pm

resident:

drinking the conspiracy koolaid I see. The investigation hasn't been completed yet and probably won't be for another six months at least. A pilot miss-identifying an airport isn't going to cause the airport to lose any "grants." It's called pilot error.


Posted by matt, a resident of Atherton: West Atherton
on Dec 1, 2013 at 6:48 pm

Resident:

You claim that 30% of the complaints are about SurfAir -- but many of the complaints are lodged at times of day when no SurfAir plane is nearby. I know this because I asked the airport officials and town residents who are tracking the so-called violations. The point is, people are complaining about SurfAir flights that don't even exist.

How is that far?


Posted by Resident, a resident of Atherton: other
on Dec 1, 2013 at 7:38 pm

The complaint doesn't have to originate at the time of the flight. Someone might call 30 minutes or an hour later. I was told 1/3 of all complaints were about Surf Air. Considering they fly less than 1/10 of 1% of flights in to San Carlos thats a lot.

For Menlo Voter. You don't want to answer the question about where the single engine 10,000 lb. plane ends up if engine failure, other equipment failure and or pilot error. This in not a cessna or a piper cub.

Just because Surf Air can, does not mean it is safe to fly such a large plane at an altitude that does not allow them to recover.

Referring to SFO does not answer the question. They fly at an altitude that allows them to recover in an emergency and they are multi engined. Regardless the question is about Surf Air.




Posted by Resident, a resident of Atherton: other
on Dec 1, 2013 at 7:44 pm

Redwood Shores and Foster City might want to get interested in discussing Surf Air. Along with the noise What would happen if the the Pilatus lands long or for some reason needs to do a go around. A 2500 ft. runway allows very little room for error.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 1, 2013 at 8:51 pm

resident:

clearly you don't wish to acknowledge the odds of the "need" to recover from an engine failure by a Pilatus PC12 is so small as to be meaningless.

You also might want to talk to Skully Skulenberger about the ability to "recover" when a multi engine jet aircraft loses both engines. He ended up in the Hudson. By the way, the likelihood of a Pilatus losing its engine is about as likely as a Airbus losing two engines to a bird strike.

Clearly you are operating at an emotional level. Those big scary airplanes might "fall" out of the sky and land on people below. The odds of you getting hit by lightening are higher than the odds of either of the above noted occurrences.

By the way, most people like you are incapable of identifying an aircraft in flight. Since some people are complaining about Surfair, automatically many of the people that are complaining about aircraft noise complain about Surfair. Most of them couldn't differentiate between a Pilatus and a King Air.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 1, 2013 at 8:53 pm

"A 2500 ft. runway allows very little room for error."

Says someone that obviously knows next to nothing about aviation or actually operating an aircraft.


Posted by Resident, a resident of Atherton: other
on Dec 1, 2013 at 9:56 pm

King Air is a twin engine,

Pilatus is a single engine,

I think you underestimate the ability of the people complaining about surf air to differentiate.


Posted by Resident, a resident of Atherton: other
on Dec 1, 2013 at 10:11 pm

Which brings up an interesting point. SCL runway 30 is 2600 ft.

The PC-12 requires 2650 ft. at MTOW, Could you double check that for us,

Thanks,


Posted by Jetman, a resident of another community
on Dec 2, 2013 at 1:03 am

Residents of Woodside have been complaining about loud transpacific flights for over a decade. Due to public pressure from Woodside residents and their political leadership (including a Grand Jury Report) the SFO Noise Abatement Office continuously monitors noise over Woodside, and issues daily reports which are available on the Noise Abatement Office's website. Web Link

A typical report looks like this: Web Link

If you go to page 2 of the report, you will find a map which records the arrival routes of aircraft for the day of the report. After studying several maps I found the following to be noteworthy:

1. The Point Reyes arrival route is bent to avoid flying over the City of San Francisco.
2. The Point Reyes arrival route is concentrated along a narrow path until it crosses the coastline. After crossing the coastline, arriving flights spread out to transit the extreme southwest corner of San Francisco County, Daly City, and Brisbane.
3. The Point Reyes arrival route, crosses the coastline at 10,000" (not on the report, but available from other sources).
4. The Modesto arrival route, is bent to avoid the most highly populated regions in the East Bay, and is somewhat more spread-out than the Oceanic Arrival route, or the Big Sur arrival route.
5. The Oceanic arrival route transits Woodside at 7,000-8,000', and flights are concentrated along a narrow path.
6. The Oceanic arrival route cuts across a very broad populated portion of southern San Mateo, and northern Santa Clara counties.
7. The Big Sur arrival route cuts across the broadest populated region of any arrival route (also in Santa Clara County)
8. The Big Sur, and Oceanic arrival routes both converge over Palo Alto. The GPS guided "NextGen" Continuous Decent Approach (CDA) requires an altitude of 3,000-3,100' over Palo Alto to begin final approach to SFO (not in the report, but available from other sources)
9. Citizen concerned about noise from San Carlos Airport may find the "Turbo Propeller" approach from the north of interest.

The City and County of San Francisco, which owns and operates SFO as a for profit corporation, is taking very effective measures to virtually eliminate arrival jet noise over San Francisco. While the City and County of San Francisco derives enormous financial benefit from the operation of SFO, it does not subject itself to the same ill effects it callously expects the citizens of the the Peninsula to bear for the "greater good".


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 2, 2013 at 1:40 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"The PC-12 requires 2650 ft. at MTOW"

MTOW is maximum takeoff weight. At lower weight, easily achievable by carrying less than full fuel tanks given the short distance of the SurfAir flight legs, less runway would be needed.


Posted by Enough, a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Dec 2, 2013 at 9:27 am

9:23 am December 2, 2013 and, again, a dark blue plane with white tips just buzzed my house - noisy and low - flying north parallel to Middlefield Road. Could hear the plane engine clearly, even through the noise cloud of my neighbor's mow and blow gardener.


Posted by resident, a resident of another community
on Dec 2, 2013 at 10:57 am

I think there are two different sets of concerns here. I live in Palo Alto directly beneath the flight path for SFO in which the west to east planes are ramping down to get in the northbound queue. I have connection to SFO for events in August in which there was a major set of problems well documented in the major papers at the time - and in subsequent follow-ups. At that time the strategy and problems with NexGen were extensively discussed. The Air Control System is very old and going through transition.
That transition also concerns how airlines are functioning relative to conversion to the NexGen system.

At that time there were also east to west planes in the same path which I complained about. There have been follow-up articles about the growth in traffic at SFO which is planned, as well as airlines switching from Oakland to SFO as a hub increasing the traffic overall.

My concern with Surf is it is intermixing with this group of commercial airlines which are speeding up, slowing down to arrange their position in the queue. The planes have established their incoming strategy by the time they get to the 13 mile mark - which is in the vicinity of Atherton. I do not think you are exposed at that point regarding the commercial airplanes. However variations with altitude and speed should be recognized if problematic so it can be corrected - not corrected in August.

My concern is why a commercial venture - Surf would locate in San Carlos when the San Jose Airport is set up to do that and has the control tower to coordinate activity as well as an extensive set of runways. My concern is why the San Carlos Airport would put themselves at risk for this type venture when extensive development is planed on El Camino in San Carlos. Oracle parks their plane in San Jose as part of a noise reduction program. My concern is the management philosophy of the airline as depicted in their on-line data. They are also financially vulnerable which points to clientele which are problematic. This is a matter of who has the money - not what your title is. Other comments about buzzing houses indicates an in-mature management style.

So Atherton is looking at a specific airline - noise and buzzing houses - and other bay area are focusing on a different set of concerns which include noise.

As side note in NY Times today is discusses Heathrow Airport and its expansion plans grounded due to noise and growth. Topic is not specific to CA peninsula area.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 2, 2013 at 12:30 pm

resident:

what you don't seem to understand is that the Surfair planes are not "intermixing" with the flight arrivals into SFO. Both are under ATC control. ATC has very specific separation requirements for IFR flight. There are two different approach paths to San Carlos and SFO. In addition, most if not all commercial aircraft carry traffic alert technology which alerts them to other aircraft in their vicinity.


Posted by matt, a resident of Atherton: West Atherton
on Dec 2, 2013 at 3:15 pm

Wow, the silliness and wild accusations continue. SurfAir wracks up unfounded noises complaints even though they're not even flying in the vicinity at the time. Of course, the hysterical people also accuse the airline of "buzzing our homes"... as if the pilots are intentionally flying low like the Red Baron or someone.

Now others are claiming that Pilatus aircraft are the problem, even though they're one of the safest planes in the world. Never mind that they are professionally maintained as opposed to residential single-engine planes that are louder and operated by amateur pilots who are far more likely to crash. Why worry about facts or statistics?

There's no logic to any of this. Just emotion and some kind of misplaced anger or jealousy that a small airline is trying to build a local business. Sad.


Posted by Resident, a resident of Atherton: other
on Dec 2, 2013 at 4:13 pm

Going back to the runway being too short for the PC-12 Specs. Peter brought up a point of using less fuel. Is this a calculation the pilot makes. Does he say this runway is 50 ft. too short so drop 50 gallons of fuel, or one less passenger, or less baggage, remember the 2650 ft. runway length is a minimum per Pilatus. No cushion for error, downdraft, bad weather, etc. Does the pilot use a computer or does he wing it. Does he have to log his weight anywhere. Does the manual state this is is o.k. Does it have a set formula for adjusting. Is this common with Airlines? Any other insight from other aviation experts would be appreciated.
If anyone from Surf Air knows how far out from airport you're flying clean I would appreciate it.

Thanks


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 2, 2013 at 4:14 pm

Matt:

You know, you may have a good point. I made a series of sound recordings of the overhead noise on Feb. 7, 8 and 9, 2013.

Was Surf Air flying yet to San Carlos in Feb 2013?

I agree, from what I have seen and heard, that the noise issues are
not solely the result of Surf Air. I think that the addition of
yet more flights would, it seems to me, naturally increase
the air traffic noise, however.

Whoever complained about "buzzing" is not lying. If
I knew how to upload these files, you would hear
clearly how loud it was. No one says its "intentional".
But it does happen.

There are 2 issues I can see: 1. The amount of noise; and 2: risk assessment
of planes crashing---for whatever cause.

Both issues could be affected, it seems to me, by an increase in
plane activity---regardless of whose planes they
are. More traffic = more noise and more risk.

I cannot say for certain, but I would guess that to
be a direct correlation. Especially noise.

People have been hounded by this noise for awhile. I
think they are getting "emotional" because rather than
the prospect of some relief, they are facing the likelihood
of yet more.


Posted by resident, a resident of another community
on Dec 2, 2013 at 5:06 pm

Matt - I am in commuter inter-island planes on a regular basis. I know small planes and where and how they integrate into regular airports. People do not think up "emotional" points - they just point out a comparison that other commuter planes function in a fairly standard manner. There is already a pre-existing expectation of how this is suppose to work. Also helicopters - those are typically owned and manned by ex-military personnel and everything is run very professionally. They understand risk and know how to manage risk. If you have had exposure to commuter airlines then there is a basis of comparison.
Half the people that express frustration in comments made appear to have a business interest in Surf Air and feel compelled to defend what ever they are doing. I am sure the Surf Air people are big boys and can listen and integrate some new ideas into what they are doing.


Posted by Stu, a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Dec 2, 2013 at 5:21 pm

Julie:

Surf Air commenced operations in San Carlos around August, so they didn't partake in the February 2013 recordings.

They have an interesting business model, and I'd like to see them succeed. The reasons they select KSQL is for customer convenience. It's very easy for customers to get in and out - multiple times a week. I have two clients who have memberships with them.

Stu


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 2, 2013 at 6:07 pm

Thanks Stu:

I really was curious about that. So they weren't even flying here yet. That is good to know.
Their arrival on the scene at this point in time may saddle them with all of the past frustrations
people are feeling about noise issues from the San Carlos Airport and other airports in this area.

Fairness is important. For them AND for us.

How to figure out all of this is going to be a large task.

What I hope is that there will be sensitivity and validity
given to all involved.

Thanks again for the information.


Posted by matt, a resident of Atherton: West Atherton
on Dec 2, 2013 at 6:12 pm

SurfAir began operations in July 2013. For the record, I am a member -- and I also happen to live directly underneath the flight path of many planes (including SurfAir) on their way to SQL SFO and others.

I just think there needs to be some balance here. Yes, there's an increase in air traffic -- 10 SurfAir flights per day, about one every 90 minutes. But these are small, single-engine planes, not jumbo jets or helicopters. And the traffic is a drop in the bucket compared to all the other planes already in our airspace.

Balance this slight increase in noise against the positives. Ask the workers at the San Carlos airport cafe if they've benefitted from extra business that comes from a few extra travelers per day. Or the shuttle services and local car rental companies who've picked up new riders. Or the aircraft maintenance folks who gain job security from knowing there's a long term flight plan on site.

Try to see the greater good in things, instead of staying narrowly focused on our own backyards. There's always a tradeoff.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 2, 2013 at 6:41 pm

No financial interest here. Just an interest in facts vs emotion.

To answer resident's question regarding who decides regarding fuel vs passengers vs length of necessary runway: every aircraft manufacturer provides an operating manual with their aircraft. In that manual are charts which are produced from years of flight test data to document aircraft performance in many different conditions and configurations. The pilot in command (PIC) uses these charts to calculate weight and balance, required runway lengths etc. The PIC will calculate all of those things to make certain he or she has enough runway, enough fuel, the aircraft is loaded in balance, etc. These are professional pilots that do this every day for a living. Many use computers/software to make these calculations. All charter operations are required to operate to set rules and guidelines governing how they conduct their flights. In no imaginable scenario is a pilot going to place his or her aircraft into a configuration that will not allow him or her to safely take off, safely conduct the flight and safely land. Remember, the pilot is the first person to the accident scene. I haven't met a pilot yet that's interested in making stupid choices which could result in his or her death. Not to mention their passengers or people on the ground. This whole "safety issue" is a non-issue. The Pilatus PC-12 is one of the safest aircraft flying and the NTSB statistics back this up.

So let's return to what this is really about, not safety - it's noise. It's not going away and no one is going to get the FAA to agree to have aircraft operate in less than safe manner so some people on the ground don't get disturbed by aircraft noise. Especially when those people live in a city with multiple sources of loud noise.

So get a grip folks. You bought homes in a major metropolitan area, not the countryside. A major metropolitan area with three international airports and at least five smaller airports. If you didn't think you were going to be bothered by aircraft noise and that there was no chance of commercial operations or growth in aircraft traffic, then you were foolish or nave. You all bought homes near a hog farm. Quit complaining about the smell.


Posted by Jetman, a resident of another community
on Dec 2, 2013 at 6:51 pm

Matt... do you realize "the greater good" is the foundational principle of collectivism? Do you really believe in collectivism, or do you just believe in it for people who's interest is in conflict with yours?

If you really do believe in collectivism and the "greater good", what are you are sacrificing for the "greater good"? The rest of us are being asked to sacrifice our peace and quiet, the enjoyment of our outdoor spaces, the ability to contemplate for more than ten minutes without being interrupted by buzzing or whistling aircraft noise, and the value we have accumulated in our homes.

Good luck selling your house with all those airplanes flying overhead. Hope you are going to make a full disclosure to the buyer.


Posted by Michael G. Stogner, a resident of another community
on Dec 2, 2013 at 7:00 pm

I know this is a little bit off topic but if you think it is crowded and noisy now wait till ABAG gets through with us. They say we need to build 188,000 housing units in the Bay Area in the next 7 years.

Web Link


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 2, 2013 at 8:03 pm

Jetman:

those aircraft disturbing your peace have been flying overhead for at least 50 years. If you thought air traffic was somehow going to decrease or stay the same then you are nave. I don't hear you complaining about sirens, leaf blowers, etc., etc., etc. Noise in a city is a fact of life. Anyone that lives in a city understands this. Those that don't like it move to the country.


Posted by Noise Problem, a resident of Menlo Park: Fair Oaks
on Dec 2, 2013 at 8:17 pm

I find this long thread to follow the same pattern as other public forums discussing airplane noise. There tends to be two groups that are active: those that hear a lot of noise and want to do something about it vs those that are aviation experts/enthusiasts that share factual information and take a position that it can't be changed.

The "noise people" can't seem to make the aviation folks understand or acknowledge their position that these aircraft are loud and bothersome to their lives. They are frustrated because safety, noise, pollution, property values and anything else presented are not a good enough reason to support their position.

According to the aviation side, the noise people are complainers and have no right to complain. They need to accept what has been going on in the skies because it's been happening far longer then the complainers have lived in the area. Get over it, move on, nothing can be done. And some even belittle those with little or no expertise. Knowledge is power I guess.

And so it goes, back and forth, back and forth, back and for....

This isn't about SFO/SJC/OAK noise. This isn't about closing down KSQL or suggesting that all other GA pilots are to blame for the increased noise. This is about one operator that is the new kid on the block and making way too much noise. The noise from the Surf Air flights and the regular schedule they fly is the reason that residents are complaining.

The noise issue is real, and the neighborhoods affected have taken notice starting this past June since Surf Air started flying. To argue that KSQL has always had a lot of noisy traffic is irrelevant. A lot of that traffic is VFR and means that it doesn't fly the IFR approach that residents are complaining about.

Surf Air flies the exact same approach path on all their flights. Exactly the same. Let me repeat, exactly the same, no variation. Seven times a day, about to go to 10 times a day, seven days a week. They are the only scheduled high volume commercial airline that does that. If I'm wrong on that, and there is another airline that flies more then 49 flights per week on a schedule, I'd like to know about it.

Other aircraft that use the published approach that Surf uses, vary their flight path considerably. I see and hear those other planes typically much further west of Middlefield in the NFO/Atherton/Menlo Park area. The random offset by the other aircraft are the reason that residents have not complained until the arrival of Surf Air. Those other aircraft don't consistently fly over their homes 49 times per week in a noisy Pilatus aircraft.

I've lived here for a while, and I have never heard anyone complaining about KSQL air traffic in our neighborhoods. And that includes me. As it turns out, I live directly under the approach, so I would know about the noise these aircraft would be making. Interestingly, until Surf Air started using KSQL, I had no idea that I lived under the approach. I just thought aircraft were heading to San Carlos airport and occasionally and randomly they flew over my house. For me, that's totally acceptable.

So can it be changed?

If we listened to everyone in the past who claimed that smokers had rights and could smoke anywhere, that woman had no business in business, that we shouldn't place limits on air pollution and fine anyone for polluting too much or that voting should be a white mans domain, we'd still be living in really crappy times. Global warming, gay rights and gun control are just a few of the same type of mega issues that will coalesce in the near future.

What's all that got to do with aircraft noise? Typically the detractors of changes in laws have their own motives to not let that change occur and are at risk if those laws go through, so they push back, and push back hard. There are a lot of people whose livelihood in aviation depends on the current system. And the FAA is managed by a lot of people who are pro aviation and whose jobs are to keep aircraft flying. But noise is not their problem because if it was, they may have to make difficult decisions balancing air safety vs acceptable noise levels on the ground. The FAA has conveniently sidestepped noise issues because it would place them in a quandary. So noisy is ok, as long as the aircraft is safe. And don't try to change those laws because they have friends in powerful places.

But what really pisses me off, is that the FAA has used MY tax dollars to fund local airports (again, in the name of safety upgrades and other much needed work) while conveniently taking away the airports rights to implement restrictions that can mitigate noise. Now that should be against the law.

Eventually the public will come together and force the laws to change, just like they did with so many things in the past and that we now take for granted.

And to be clear, if it wasn't for Surf Air, I doubt any of us would be having this conversation.

Let the vitriol begin...


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 2, 2013 at 10:00 pm

To: Noise Problem
Great post. Jetman stated something similar I think: re:

Re:"But what really pisses me off, is that the FAA has used MY tax dollars to fund local airports (again, in the name of safety upgrades and other much needed work) while conveniently taking away the airports rights to implement restrictions that can mitigate noise. Now that should be against the law."

Remember the old phrase? "Taxation without representation"

I wonder what legislative body could help with this. We need to create
the law...for it, then, to be against the law.


Posted by Resident, a resident of Atherton: other
on Dec 3, 2013 at 1:31 am

Dear Noise Problem, In response to your posting earlier this evening. I have read every comment on this thread (133 to date.) Many several times. I have written 1/2 dozen or so.

I have to say yours is the best written i've seen by far. You were thoughtful, objective, non accusatory, and well informed about your comments,They were factually based. You did your homework. You were unemotional, non-reactive used excellent grammar, and it was easy to read. What a breathe of fresh air amongst the bickering back and forth. I'm sure you touched a lot of other people that may not respond as such. I'm assuming you are some type of professional writer. Perhaps those of us sincerely interested can follow your lead and take a more civil approach to this discussion.

I don't possess these skills and my point may not come across as well as yours. I'll take a couple of your points and leave your comments to stand on their own for people to read. You mentioned the regularity of the flights and noise. This has been much more disturbing than the constant irregular flights by other local traffic. You have some knowledge of aviation by stating local traffic flies VFR and can vary landing approaches. Flying into the prescribed pattern as opposed to Surf Airs constant low straight in approach. I have lived hear 40 years and my wife was born in Palo Alto 59 years ago. Neither one of us has ever complained about local aircraft traffic noise. It all started with the Surf Air flights. I hope they get the message and change their route to approach farther north closer to the bay which would also allow for a safer landing in case of an emergency. Personally I have nothing against surf air, although if challenged I'm sure their lawyers are ready with a bully mentality if needed.

Thank you for bringing a well informed common sense discussion to what had become a brawl at times,

I hope everyone takes the time to read your comments, Please add more this is important, It's not just noise its a major safety issue.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 3, 2013 at 8:41 am

Noise problem:

a thoughtful a reasoned post. Very nice.

Resident:

this is decidedly NOT about safety.


Posted by matt, a resident of Atherton: West Atherton
on Dec 3, 2013 at 9:18 am

So now the issue is about taxation without representation and "Big Government" taking away our rights? All because of 10 extra flights a day?

Jetman, you sarcastically wished me good luck selling my home with all these planes flying overhead. Um, have you looked at median home prices in SMC? I'll take that risk 100 times out of 100!


Posted by matt, a resident of Atherton: West Atherton
on Dec 3, 2013 at 9:28 am

Noise Problem:

Let me get this straight. You're OK with lots and lots of single-engine flights coming over your house. These flights can come with no rhyme or reason, from all directions and approaches, basically at any time of day.

There could be dozens of those flights on any given day, but you're NOT ok with a handful of regularly scheduled, limited and predictable flyovers from SurfAir?

That's some interesting logic, for sure.


Posted by Noise Problem, a resident of Menlo Park: Fair Oaks
on Dec 3, 2013 at 11:05 am

Matt, your response is baseless.

When did I quantify the number of total flights over my home? Apparently you are very familiar with those numbers, even though you don't have a clue where I live.

You should stick to facts. I don't have "lots and lots of single engine flights" coming over my house, nor do I experience "dozens of those flights", and if I did, I doubt I would be happy with that much traffic. I made it really clear that the majority of aircraft using the published approach are offset from the path that Surf flies. That means they don't fly over my house.

For the record, there are on average 6 flights per day that fly directly over my house, not including Surf Air. Those aircraft range from twins, single and even the occasional personal jet. All are much quieter then the Surf flights, and I'm able to accept the noise they create.

It's too bad you refuse to accept that Surf is the problem. That is illogical when there is so much evidence that they are the problem. Apparently over 200 residents agree with me: Web Link


Posted by resident, a resident of another community
on Dec 3, 2013 at 1:35 pm

The business plan of this airline is very irregular. It sends up red flags. All I am seeing here is a transportation system is which miscellaneous people with big pockets are flying from point 1 to point 2 with no security over sight. Big pockets here is not Silicon Valley executives. Big Pockets are people with a lot of money who do not want any security over sight.
That is a very big red flag. San Carlos already has had a drug bust - FBI sting. The financial scheme here is very problematical.


Posted by resident, a resident of another community
on Dec 3, 2013 at 3:15 pm

Just like to clarify the business model here - any company doing business that has a tax return has to stand up to an audit to justify the travel expense. The Surf model will not get you there. Any person who is a sole proprietor with a tax return will be audited for travel expense. The Surf model will not get you there.

Travel expense is the most heavily audited element in any tax return. That leaves a bunch of people who will not submit a tax return including travel on Surf Air. That narrows your field of who is on the plane and why they are there.

Any Executive with any company will use a recognized commercial airline with travel arrangements made through their company using a standard set of regulations that have been pre-negotiated with the IRS and the company CFO.
And they will not put anyone of value on a small plane for business travel. That is contrary to the company regulations and policy.

So someone - A Silicon Valley CEO - is ON VACATION with his family - is an experienced pilot with a plane - and in the news today goes down somewhere in Idaho - yet to be found.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 3, 2013 at 3:41 pm

"So someone - A Silicon Valley CEO - is ON VACATION with his family - is an experienced pilot with a plane - and in the news today goes down somewhere in Idaho - yet to be found.

Piston driven aircraft. Radio communication with ATC indicates engine failure in bad weather.


Posted by Resident, a resident of Atherton: other
on Dec 3, 2013 at 5:18 pm

As of a few weeks ago surf air had 350 active members and 6000 on the waitinlg list i would like to hear from surf how that translates to the number of additional flights into san carlos


Posted by resident, a resident of another community
on Dec 3, 2013 at 5:50 pm

In the Wall Street Journal today, Page A6 - Act Quickly - you can get a new Pilatus PG-12 NG by 31 December. Federal incentives allow for accelerated depreciation in year-one of new business aircraft ownership. WOW! is that a deal? So it would make sense for any large Silicon Valley company to get their own plane. Then they could satisfy and stand up to IRS audit.
See you really don't need SURF airlines - you can get your own plane.
Nice picture in ad.
Surf is based in Santa Monica Airport - that used to be the McDonnell Douglas Corp facility which moved to Huntington Beach - became Boeing.


Posted by gwen, a resident of Menlo Park: Fair Oaks
on Dec 3, 2013 at 6:32 pm

Matt- You are accurate on all points. I live directly under the landing path and made calls to the airport. I've never complained about noise until this summer when Surf Air began their flights- I didn't know who was causing it when I called San Carlos- but they identified and my further tracking confirmed it is Surf Air- they are extremely loud, you can hear their approach before the pass in landing mode, it is beyond disturbing. Please sign the petition and voice your concerns.
Web Link


Posted by Resident, a resident of another community
on Dec 3, 2013 at 7:39 pm

Surf Air was kept out of being based in Santa Monica by resident complaints. Sign the petition, It works,


Posted by Jetman, a resident of another community
on Dec 3, 2013 at 11:39 pm

FAA's Next Big Issue Is Acting on Its Next-Gen Air Traffic Control Dreams
Associated Press ~ November 1, 2013
"NextGen was originally forecast to cost $40 billion, split between government and industry, and to be completed by 2025. But an
internal FAA report estimates it will cost three times that much and take 10 years longer to complete, Scovel said. FAA officials have
largely stopped talking about end dates and completion costs as the technologies that make up NextGen continue to evolve. The
agency currently spends about $800 million a year on the program." Web Link

That's right... the FAA is going to spend $60 billion of your tax dollars on "NextGen", so the Airlines can save fuel by relentlessly flying noisier routes over your homes, and to free up airspace for drones which will be used to spy on you... and deliver pizzas (or both, if you are foolish to have one make a delivery to your home).


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 4, 2013 at 9:31 am

The web link posted by Jetman just before my post here regarding NextGen is a good article. It greatly increased my understanding. For anyone wanting more clarity and information, it provides it.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 4, 2013 at 11:26 am

Jetman:

you act as if no one benefits from fuel savings but the airlines. We all benefit. Passengers benefit from lower costs to fly and the world benefits due to the lower introduction of CO2 into the atmosphere. Cost/benefit.


Posted by follow the money, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 4, 2013 at 12:09 pm

As a 45 year resident of Lindenwood in Atherton I am outraged about the noise created by Surf Air and their Pilatus PC 12 aircraft. This is a new invasion of my quality of life and,no,it did not exist or was even conceivable when I purchased my home.

It is bad enough that over the years the large jet traffic landings at SFO have increased each year so that it is intolerable as well. From the three or five plane 5 am landings of red-eyes from Hawaii letting down and shifting gears over my house to the afternoon flights from Europe doing the same, it is a constant background noise that is subtle and invasive.

However, the Surf Air flights are far worse and the louder noise, frequency and duration really offend me. As mentioned in other posts there are many rules and government agencies involved giving the operation a level of legitimacy, but it is not right that the people on the ground have had no say or are the remedies presently mentioned realistic.

Surf Air originally was hoping to fly out of Palo Alto Airport according to an earlier business plan. Probably Palo Alto had no appetite for the traffic and the operation was quickly to San Carlos Airport. Why did San Carlos Airport want it?From the San Mateo Public Works website operating the Airport it is clear the operation of the airport is a profit center and likely Surf Air fit right into their business plan as well:

Quote "The Airport is self-funded through airport user and business fees and receives no money from the County's General Fund. Aviation is the top employer in San Mateo County and the Airport provides an important source of education and training for the pilots, mechanics and airport employees that fill the jobs in the industry."

So one may follow the money to the County Airport operators,to Surf Air and their investors and to the approximately 200 passengers a day (20 landings a day at 10 pax per plane). So no matter how you slice it this the bottom line is and where the solution lies. It is interesting to note from various comments in news articles and blogs from qualified aviation experts this "Netflix" conceived model is likely doomed to failure. Lets just hope they burn through their nine million venture funding quickly and go broke. Can't happen soon enough!


Posted by Jetman, a resident of another community
on Dec 4, 2013 at 2:01 pm

Menlo Voter...

If "NextGen" makes sense from a cost/benefit point of view, why can't the airlines do it on their own, without a $60 billion subsidy from the American taxpayers? Read the article. The airlines are already worrying that it doesn't make sense, even with the taxpayer paying half of the bill.

How much do you want to bet, the airline never even pay their half of the $120 billion? The airlines have the FAA over a barrel. The airline know if they back out now, the federal government will have to pay for it all, or all of the three-letter agencies won't get the airspace for their drones.

And no, everyone does not benefit from the $60 billion taxpayer subsidy. Some benefit enormously, and some not at all. Taxpayers who don't live in areas polluted by commercial air traffic, and who don't fly, don't benefit. What's wrong with letting the free market work in the airline industry?


Posted by gwen, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 4, 2013 at 2:33 pm

To Follow the Money -Please sign the petition Web Link
AND attend the community meeting MONDAY
The Town of Atherton is sponsoring a Community Meeting to discuss aircraft noise - in particular, noise related to the recent activity of Surf Air along the Middlefield corridor.
Representatives from surrounding communities, state and federal government, San Carlos Airport, and Surf Air have been invited to attend to hear the concerns of the affected community.
When: December9,2013
Where: Jennings Pavilion, Holbrook-Palmer Park @ 150 Watkins in Atherton
Time: 6pm - 8 pm
RSVP: grodericks@ci.atherton.ca.us

650.752.0504
The tentative Agenda is:
‣ Welcome - Mayor of Atherton ‣ Summary of the Issue(s)
‣ Summary of the Status
‣ Public Comment
‣ Summary, Wrap Up & Next Steps


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 4, 2013 at 2:41 pm

Reply to : Follow The Money

Re: " it is a constant background noise that is subtle and invasive. "

Yes! Like a form of water torture---one drop at a time (one plane at a time). San Carlos Airport's unique version of "water boarding". They are " shoving it down our throats" ignoring whatever effects we must endure.


Posted by Menllo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 4, 2013 at 5:41 pm

Jetman:

if you want safe skies you can't leave it to the free market.


Posted by Jetman, a resident of another community
on Dec 4, 2013 at 6:34 pm

The Use of Aircraft Noise in Psychological Warfare

In the later stages of the war in the Pacific the Japanese Imperial Navy devised a devious plan, which used aircraft to degrade the readiness and moral of the embattled Marines on the Island of Guadalcanal.

"During the campaign, the Japanese sent solitary aircraft on nighttime missions over Guadalcanal for various reasons. The reasons included scouting, dropping flares over Allied positions to assist Japanese naval or ground forces operating on or near the island, to bomb the airfield or Allied installations, and/or to harass the Allied troops and disrupt their sleep." Web Link

The loud aircraft, often with detuned or unsynchronized engines became known collectively as "Washing machine Charlie", after the loud washing machines of the period.


Posted by Resident, a resident of another community
on Dec 4, 2013 at 6:34 pm

I have lived in this area for 40 years and never complained about aircraft noise. I just read all the petition remarks and they all say noise. This is not based on petty sensitivity. This is a serious difference from other aircraft.

Even with the gear and flaps up, which someone with more knowledge than me can comment on re; safety. it is still too low, too noisy.

Att. Palo Alto, Redwood Shores, Foster City, You will be affected. For every landing there is a takeoff. With 6,000 people on the waiting list what will your tolerance level be for the number of flights into SQL. It's generated all this comment at 6 per day, going to 10, try 20,30,40,50,

There is no limit by law. Please sign the petition.

It's the type of plane, Single engine turbo prop with a 1200 h.p. Pratt and Whitney.


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 4, 2013 at 7:41 pm

Re: The Use of Aircraft Noise in Psychological Warfare

Wow. Interesting.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 4, 2013 at 7:55 pm

I'm curious. Has anyone taken a Db meter and taken a sample under a landing Surfair flight?


Posted by follow the money, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 4, 2013 at 8:05 pm

In a staff report, City Manager George Rodericks said the town last month assisted with a decibel reading at 20 Holbrook Lane, and measured the noise from a Surf Air plane flying about 1,500 feet overhead at 68-72 decibels. The town's noise ordinance restricts noise at that time of day — about 7:30 a.m. — to 60 decibels, the report said. The ambient noise at that location registered 48.5-51.5 decibels.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 4, 2013 at 9:31 pm

interesting follow. Now, did they happen to check the Db readings of the leaf blowers that are running all day all over Menlo Park and Atherton. Or the sirens from emergency vehicles? Betting not. Oh, and how about the jack hammers that get run when they're working on the roads or doing other construction? There's far more noise generated by those sources than Surfair flights. We live in a city, not the countryside.


Posted by Resident, a resident of another community
on Dec 4, 2013 at 10:28 pm

According to Aviation Safety Network, Google it, There have been 29 PC-12 Accidents reported in the last 15 years with 74 fatalities. Not a chance I would prefer to take in an area as densely populated as the Middlefield Corridor. Flying from the South over San Jose, continue North at a safe altitude. Then make a left turn with an approach from 680/101 intersection flying over the freeway/bay front to SQL. Not 1200 ft. AGL down Middlefield Rd.


Posted by Mark, a resident of Atherton: Lloyden Park
on Dec 5, 2013 at 1:56 am

Follow the Money stated:

"So one may follow the money to the County Airport operators,to Surf Air and their investors and to the approximately 200 passengers a day (20 landings a day at 10 pax per plane)."

Just a correction on the numbers - Looking at SurfAir website,the schedule starting next week shows are maximum of 10 landings in San Carlos each day and they state the capacity per plane is 6 passengers for a total of 60 passengers (not including crew).


Posted by follow the money, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 5, 2013 at 5:26 am

Mark, I stand corrected on the capacity. It appears to be six although some web sites list it as eight passengers. In order to remain in the FAA licence category they are in they cannot carry more than nine passengers.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 5, 2013 at 7:03 am

resident:

you need to look at the actual NTSB database reports on the crashes of the Pilatus in the last 15 years. I did. Two of them were due to mechanical failure. Two. The rest were all pilot error. You can't just look at raw data and form an informed opinion as to the safety of an aircraft. The PC-12 has an outstanding safety record.


Posted by resident, a resident of another community
on Dec 5, 2013 at 10:57 am

Comments on the tax base relative to airports - I believe that is really specific to SFO which is one of the biggest employers in San Mateo county.
If you put commercial in SFO and private in San Carlos that would be a good position to take. Problem is that Surf's business plan is trying to stage themselves as a private airline versus a commercial airline. That changes up their tax base. They are passing on a high initiation and monthly charge to the member whether they use the plane or not. It is not a pay-as-you-go system so it is by-passing any meaningful metric in comparison to other airline ventures. You s a member will not get any meaningful data out of this organization. So that leaves you with NOISE.


Posted by resident, a resident of another community
on Dec 5, 2013 at 11:25 am

Just too clarify on the Palo Alto Airport - it is no longer a Santa Clara County run airport - it has assumed PA city management. In the geographic location the Palo Alto Golf Course next to the airport is undergoing upgrade to include soccer fields and an improved flood control effort. Across the street there is a discussion concerning the former city dump to build a hi-tech garbage system. The city has a lot of other actions in process specific to the PA Airport location, as well as rebuilding some of the surrounding housing and electrical system brought down in a crash a while back. I am sure that any decisions regarding the use of the PA airport was a PA management decision. Thank you PA.


Posted by PVrez, a resident of Portola Valley: Central Portola Valley
on Dec 5, 2013 at 2:47 pm

the reality is that planes are flying over everyones homes - just watch them

Web Link


Posted by gwen, a resident of Menlo Park: Fair Oaks
on Dec 5, 2013 at 5:18 pm

Our community group had another meeting this morning with Surf Air and the airport-some notes related to the thread above:
SURF AIR
Increased flights (new schedule) will be delayed until January.
Today, Surf did a 7:40am visual approach over 101
Surf will start implementing new visual approach arrivals in the next 3 weeks.
Moving towards carrying 7 passengers (from 6), but it's weather limited. They plan to stay in San Carlos, but may add new airports such as OAK, SJC.

Please voice your concerns Monday night at the community meeting.


Posted by Resident, a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Dec 5, 2013 at 7:31 pm

Gwen,

Thanks for updating us. The important item is changing their approach location. Can you give any more details on when, if, under what circumstances and how often they would use the freeway approach?

Thanks again,


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 5, 2013 at 8:01 pm

resident:

they can only use that approach in VFR conditions.


Posted by Resident, a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Dec 5, 2013 at 11:20 pm

if they file under an instrument flight plan can they change to a vfr approach if conditions allow, is it pilots choice,
90% of our weather would allow for local vfr conditions


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 6, 2013 at 7:43 am

resident:

I would have to research it, but I think it would require early cancellation of IFR to allow for a standard VFR approach into San Carlos. The Pilatus is a pretty big aircraft to be making that quick of a turn to final. I think that's why they are flying the approach they fly. It's a more stable approach and it is a safer approach.


Posted by resident, a resident of another community
on Dec 6, 2013 at 9:05 am

Above comment says that Santa Monica is not the SOCAL base for Surf Air due to complaints. So where are they flying from in SOCAL? Is there focus now on San Carlos as the permanent base?


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 6, 2013 at 9:21 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Moving the San Carlos approach to the East is not any easy problem - look how intricate the Bay Area airspace is:

Web Link

It is hard to even find San Carlos Airport on this map.


Posted by resident, a resident of another community
on Dec 6, 2013 at 1:31 pm

In Palo Alto air space Surf is moving in a south to north path over Middlefield Road - approximate only - could be El Camino south to north - somewhere in between. Yes - I can hear it from here - noisy plane. Meanwhile the commercial incoming to SFO are moving west to east and making their turn northward for approach - approximately at 101. These paths are crossing at Oregon Expressway to Embarcadero, approximate. They are visually intersecting in their paths in this area. These are not planes going to PA Airport - those are on the other side of 101 and much lower at this point.
There are also commercial planes going east to west in this same path - presumably Oakland to Hawaii.

Surf Air is talking Burbank Airport in their ads - that is good - a real airport which is a Southwest base so has good control system. People have to go through Security to get to the airline boarding areas.

They use the word "Disruptive" in their ads - latest buzzword typically used in the development of Apps and software programs. However - translated to airline travel it is attempting to undo any safety feature that has been put in place to protect the traveling public. The word Disruptive is their choice - they are hyping their disregard for any accountability and security related effort. I do not think the FAA will be pleased with the "disruptive" take on their business plan and policies. It is attempting to undo all of the latest efforts in safety and security.


Posted by PVrez, a resident of Portola Valley: Central Portola Valley
on Dec 6, 2013 at 2:25 pm

@resident - surfair is talking about their business model being disruptive to established charter and commercial services. you characterizing surfair as disregarding accountability and security because of that is just laughable. and your comment that they are attempting to undo the latest efforts in safety and security make you come off as some kind of conspiracy theory nut job. try sticking to the facts and give your imagination a rest.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 6, 2013 at 2:39 pm

PVrez:

resident is grasping at straws. He or she couldn't make the PC-12 an "unsafe" aircraft so there went their "safety" argument. Guess they had to come up with some other supposed "safety" argument. Weak as it may be.


Posted by resident, a resident of another community
on Dec 6, 2013 at 4:06 pm

Portola Valley - you have got to keep up here - Disruptive is a very popular buzz word now - It denotes a new way of doing business - a lot of books out now on the topic. My other comments are taken right out of Surf Airs description of itself from google downloads. It describes itself that way - it is their selling point.
As to safety it may not be the plane itself - it may be the pilot and customers. If you go through a lot of airports then you know that safety is a prime concern. I came back from Paris in June and our Paris to SFO plane had a baggage strike - our plane only - the rest left - because we had a planeload of people who somehow raised a red flag. Baggage was strewn on the tarmac. Europe and America are very focused on safety.


Posted by Resident, a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Dec 6, 2013 at 4:09 pm

Hi Gwen,

Did Surf Air Reps. give any idea how many flights they would have into San Carlos in the future?


Posted by Resident, a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Dec 7, 2013 at 12:42 am

You keep saying 15 crashes only 2 engine failures

It's 29 crashes w/ 74 fatalities,

Engine failure, hydraulic failure, airframe compromised, brake failure, icing, pilot error, it doesn't matter what Caused the crash,

That's 5 tons of steel, aluminum, chemicals, passengers and fuel flying over menlo park at 1200 ft. at 150 mph.

This thing is a missile, do the math, where are they going to land?

The PC-12 is a very safe plane, and most plane crashes result in few fatalities, because most planes don't fly that speed, that low, above houses and schools for that many miles. It only takes one.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 7, 2013 at 8:08 am

resident:

you need to work on your reading comprehension. There have been two crashes of PC-12's due to engine failure in FIFTEEN YEARS. Read the NTSB reports. The likelihood of one of these planes falling on your head is lower than your being struck by lightening. I can guarantee you that throughout your day there are aircraft passing over your head that have safety records that are not as good as the PC-12. This isn't about safety. It's about you and your neighbors self absorbed belief that you should be able to pretend you live in the countryside when you don't. Get over yourselves.


Posted by Michael G. Stogner, a resident of another community
on Dec 7, 2013 at 9:40 am

Todays Daily Post article says Cory Cozzons the co-founder of Surf Air ...He hopes to change its flight path to satisfy Atherton residents etc also he said they have 6 flights a day in and out of San Carlos Airport. They did plan to increase 2 more flights per day as of Monday, but that has been put on hold until January.


Posted by follow the money, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 7, 2013 at 10:39 am

In another episode of "follow the money" it is apparent there in an upcoming clash between the wealth in Atherton against the startup airline, Surf Air who is noisly disrupting the lives of Atherton residents. It is clear they are scrambling to put a lid on their problem with VFR approaches that are a temporary fix to public outcry. Their business plan calls for many more landings and is required to make the company economically viable. As a few aviation types (Peter Carpenter etc) have pointed out San Carlos is mixed into very crowded airspace and a PC-12 is not exactly suited to this VFR approach. San Carlos airport was not designed to be a commercial commuter airport nor is the approach pattern over a quiet residential town suitable for a noisy turbofan airplane.
So do you think Paul Allen who just purchased a $27 million house near the IFR route was unaware or is now pleased to find this is no part of his new purchase? I would guess not nor do the other eight billionaires and lesser types who chose and have invested money in Atherton because of its rural, open space and quiet nature. So this will be an interesting road in the follow the money game.


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 7, 2013 at 12:21 pm

FollowTheMoney:
"nor is the approach pattern over a quiet residential town suitable for a noisy turbofan airplane."

Not just one town. All if the cities adjacent to Atherton are being affected.

I've read prejudicial comments about, so-called "Athertonians"; about Atherton residents being "privileged" Etc. on this thread.

This is not just Atherton's battle. Just look at the number of views on this subject and posts.

Atherton "took on" the battle by addressing it and by trying to seek improvement of a situation that is tormenting more than just a few cities in this area. It is not because they are pampered or privileged. It is because they are fed-up and because they are right.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 7, 2013 at 1:03 pm

Julie:

no they're not "right." You live next to a hog farm. You knew it was there when you bought your house. Quit complaining about the smell.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 7, 2013 at 1:08 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Everyone should realize that just shifting the flight path to the East simply means moving the noise problem to someone else's neighborhood. In this case that means to East Palo Alto and Eastern Menlo Park. The articulate and more powerful residents of Lindenwood and NFO win but our neighbors to the East lose.

The best outcome is to change the vertical profile of the VFR flights and not just move the horizontal flight path somewhere else.


Posted by Jetman, a resident of another community
on Dec 7, 2013 at 3:06 pm

I have to agree with Peter on this:
"The best outcome is to change the vertical profile of the VFR flights and not just move the horizontal flight path somewhere else."

Sound is subject to the inverse square law. That means distance is the most powerful tool in the war against noise. Web Link

The only other option that would be fair to East Menlo, and East Palo Alto, would be to shut down Surfair operations at SQL altogether.

Distance is also the solution to the increase in commercial jet noise people are experiencing due to the FAA's recent roll-out of "NextGen" flight profiles at SFO. The "NextGen" flight profiles cross 101 at ~3,000'. The Visual approach profile used to cross 101 at 5,000'. The reduction in engine and airframe noise you get with "NextGen" cannot make up for the 2,000' reduction in altitude.


Posted by Resident, a resident of another community
on Dec 7, 2013 at 3:27 pm

Menlo Voter,

Aviation Safety Network, Google it, Type in Pilatus PC-!2

The NTSB only covers the U.S. There were a total of 29 crashes, 74 Fatalities worldwide of PC-12's, You keep saying only 2 engine failures. There's more to an airplane than the engine that will cause a plane to fail. How do you think the other 27 crashed? At ASN they give details of each crash, I won't give the list here again. Everyone should read it for themselves,

Do you think pilot error only occurs in other places? Have you heard of bad weather?

As for the middlefield corridor it only takes One to cause mass devastation.

Do you think pilot error only occurs in other places.

As for Menlo Voter. Type slow and you'll get there. I think I'm beginning to understand you must be a member/investor.

Thank you Surf Air for exploring other options.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 7, 2013 at 4:11 pm

resident:

not a member or investor. Just someone that believes in factual information. something that has been greatly lacking in your posts as regards safety. Yes there are other causes of crashes. Obviously. Pilot error is the most common cause of airplane crashes. And it doesn't matter what aircraft it occurs in. You have thousands of flights passing over your head every day. Any one of those could experience catastrophic pilot error resulting in a crash. In your neighborhood. But that's a red herring and you know it. This isn't about safety, it's about noise. If it was REALLY about safety you'd be whining about all of the other aircraft flying over your head, but you're not, are you? No, you're whining about one particular aircraft flown by one particular operator because it's disturbing your misguided notion that you live in the countryside. You don't. Get over it.


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 7, 2013 at 5:15 pm

Menlo Voter:

I bought this house 35 years ago. I would have had to be clairvoyant to have that kind of foresight.

I would prefer "living next to a hog farm".

People have the right to express themselves. You need not agree. Perhaps we have different vantage points. That's allowed.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 7, 2013 at 5:26 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

I just watched and listened to the 4:10 SurfAir plane fly over Lindenwod. It did not yet have its landing gear down or it's flaps extended. Only 20 seconds of noise and that was a lot less than the leaf blower next door.

This really is much ado about nothing. We live in a major metropolitan area and there is noise from lots of things - that comes with the benefits of living where we have chosen to live.

Both the San Carlos airport has been here for a very long time.

"The San Carlos Airport was moved to its present location in 1950.[3] Prior to that, the airport was located approximately one-half mile southwest of its current location at the site where a Best Buy is now located. This original San Carlos airport was opened by Frank S. Cooley prior to 1928."


Posted by Resident, a resident of another community
on Dec 7, 2013 at 6:56 pm

Menlo Voter,
Thanks for making my point. PC-12 is safe, Other planes are safe.
However, A safe plane flying in an unsafe manner is an accident waiting to happen. 1200 ft. at 150 mph. over homes and schools is an unsafe manner. You just don't want to admit it. I don't know any other regularly scheduled airline that flies that often in that configuration. I can't believe the FAA thought this through or they were mislead. If I were a founder or corporate exec. at Surf I would not want the liability, financial and personal knowing this flights' configuration.
On another note, Since you know the PC-12 so well. Is there a bulkhead and security door separating the cockpit from the passengers. And yes the plane is large annoying and extremely noisy. But answer the above. We both agree it's too noisy.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 7, 2013 at 7:16 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"However, A safe plane flying in an unsafe manner is an accident waiting to happen. 1200 ft. at 150 mph. over homes and schools is an unsafe manner. "

Given the SFO Class B airspace any non-SFO traffic inbound to San Carlos must be below 1500 ft or, further to the west of Middlefield , 4000ft. And many of them are flying faster than 100 mph - nothing unsafe about that altitude and speed.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 7, 2013 at 7:37 pm

resident:

as Peter noted and I've tried to inform you, there are many, many aircraft flying over your head. Many of the aircraft flying overhead are at 1500 feet and 150 mph. That's their approach speed. Nothing unsafe about it. The problem is you know nothing about aviation, aircraft or the operation of same. Yet you want to impose your uninformed opinion on those that do know something about the subject. If you want to be afraid of planes over flying your home then I guess you are going to be very, very afraid for a very long time because none of these aircraft are going anywhere nor are they being operated in an unsafe manner. It's about NOISE. You want to make it about safety, but it's clearly not.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 7, 2013 at 7:41 pm

Julie:

no need to be clairvoyant. The airport was there thirty five years ago when you bought your house. No secret. It's the big 2500 foot paved strip about five miles north of Atherton. Been there since at least 1950.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 7, 2013 at 7:44 pm

resident:

I also don't agree that the Pilatus is noisy. I find it to be less noisy than the King Airs that overfly my home on a fairly regular basis. Or the other aircraft inbound to San Carlos that overfly my house. Frankly as turbine driven aircraft go, it's pretty quiet.


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 7, 2013 at 8:32 pm

Menlo Voter:

Well, okay, then there are at least two possibilities here: 1. The airport was not as noisy then; or 2. I wasn't as cranky.

However, since you reference the year 1950, I suggest you go down to San Mateo County and take a look at the plat maps of that year. This area was not developed any where near what it is now.

The noise was not bothering as many people. The flights were not flying over densely populated areas.

But I give up. You win.


Posted by Resident, a resident of another community
on Dec 7, 2013 at 9:51 pm

Menlo Voter

Well i guess that says it all.

"The Pilatus is not Noisy"

You must being doing this for some weird pleasure because if you can't admit that it's noisy there is no help for you.

You should re read the last 200 posts.

One last question for anyone that knows, Is there a bulkhead and a security door between the cockpit and the passenger cabin? I would think the FAA would require this for any airline for obvious safety reasons.

Peter please name one other Airline that flies the Middlefield corridor on that approach plate. I'm not talking about small personal aircraft. I'm talking about a 5 ton Aircraft at 1200-1400 ft. That's their range. I don't know how low they are in the populated area across from Costco. No one seems to be speaking for them.

I empathize with you Julie, It's tempting to give up educating Menlo Voter.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 8, 2013 at 9:23 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"Given the SFO Class B airspace any non-SFO traffic inbound to San Carlos must be below 1500 ft or, further to the west of Middlefield , 4000ft."

I would like to clarify this point. Aircraft east of ECR inbound to San Carlos must be below 2500 ft until about Highway 84 when they must be below 1500 ft.

Perhaps the best solution would be for SurfAir to begin its descents west of the Stanford stadium where the class B floor is 4000 ft. They could then do a gradual Controlled decent approach from that higher altitude at lower power settings.

Moving their approaches to the east keeps them under the more restrictive/lower Class B floor and would not permit as quiet a CDA.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 8, 2013 at 10:34 am

Peter:

that seems to be the approach the King Airs and some other larger aircraft are taking when they pass over my house. Of course, as you know, that's a totally VFR approach, most likely vectored by ATC. The typical VFR approach from the east has traffic entering the pattern at or about the base leg. That's not a suitable approach for larger aircraft like the PC-12 and the King Air.

While using this approach solves the problem for folks in Atherton, it just shifts the noise west. It also doesn't address "resident's" safety concerns.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 8, 2013 at 10:47 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

What I am proposing is shifting the initial point of the approaches to the west where the floor of the SFO Class B airspace is higher thereby permitting lower noise Controlled Descent Approaches. The planes will be higher and at a lower power setting thereby significantly reducing their noise footprint. Think of this as a gliding descent rather than the level and step down descent that requires higher power settings and hence creates more noise closer to the ground.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 8, 2013 at 11:09 am

Surfair is a charter operation, at least as far as FAA regulation is concerned. As such no bulkhead or door are required at the cockpit. I haven't been on any of Surfair's aircraft so I can't say if they have them or not, just that they're not required. Surfair operates under Part 135 of FAA regulations. Airlines operate under Part 121. Based on this link a bulkhead and door can be installed: Web Link


That said, Surfair has adopted Part 121 type operating procedures so realistically there is no safety difference. Their pilots are all ATP rated. The highest level of licensing the FAA requires. Their aircraft are operated with two pilots even though the PC-12 can be operated by a single pilot and is certified by the FAA as such.

In addition to that Surfair runs background checks on all members before they are allowed to fly. You won't find regular airlines doing that.

I would fly on Surfair's flights and I would be totally unafraid of putting any of my family members on one, including my 2 1/2 year old grandson.


Posted by resident, a resident of another community
on Dec 8, 2013 at 12:34 pm

This is not a charter airline. It is a commercial venture as it is flying a proscribed route on a proscribed timetable. Individual members do not get to dictate the route and schedule. The problem here is that each customer has put up a fee - buy-in - and monthly payment whether they use the service or not. They have effectively moved the risk to the paid membership. Membership should consider themselves as share holders but not set up that way. Sweet deal. Something goes wrong then the membership has each individually lost their initial investment and proration of monthly payment. I am laughing. Reading their input on Google they even have a plan that says people will be limited on the number of flights per month.
Sweet deal. I am laughing even harder now. Do not expect to see any executive from any major company who has to run a business on the plane.
You will be seeing a very different clientele. That I am not laughing at - hope San Carlos Airport gets some security staff and dogs.


Posted by Menlo voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 8, 2013 at 12:45 pm

I guess they're a whole lot of stupid wealthy folks out there since they've got a waiting list of 6000.


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 8, 2013 at 1:25 pm

Resident:

Empathy is a wonderful quality. It is the starting point of resolving many problems in the world.


Posted by Jetman, a resident of another community
on Dec 9, 2013 at 1:26 am

WSJ Article on Surf Air founders Wade and Dave Eyerly:

"Prior to leading the start-up, he (Wade) served, among other things, as an economist to the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff covering Europe and NATO, and as a press advance to the Bush-Cheney campaign in 2004... His brother Dave previously trained as a pilot at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, then went on to work for the Transportation Security Administration..." Web Link

Article on Wade Eyerly from The NYT:

"At 16, he walked into the registrar's office at the University of Central Missouri, not knowing he was supposed to have applied for admission. He walked out with a schedule of classes. After arriving in Washington, jobless, he landed a position in Vice President Dick Cheney's press office, followed by stints in Iraq as a government operative and in Washington as a National Security Agency consultant." Web Link

Hmmm...




Posted by Resident, a resident of Atherton: Lloyden Park
on Dec 9, 2013 at 2:26 am

No sure where you're going with that one? Sounds to me like they very connected.


Posted by Resident, a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Dec 9, 2013 at 2:42 am

Any news Peter on those other Airlines that fly the Middlefield Corridor at 12-1400 ft. at 150 mph as you mentioned above.

I have total respect for your knowledge in aviation. Can you get more specific on the other flights you discussed flying down the corridor.
I have lived in the same home for 10 years. and only noticed the noise when Surf Air started last Summer. As have 150 of the 200+ responses to this thread. I've seen the King Airs, They fly much higher and on different routes. I also believe it is a quieter plane and with 2 engines if one fails.
Using Stuarts graphic would help.

Thanks,

People need to understand that any mechanical failure or pilot error and the PC-12 changes from a plane into a missile.

Peter let us know if you have any knowledge or experience with what the carnage would be if that happens.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 9, 2013 at 6:54 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

In IFR conditions EVERY plane landing at San Carlos MUST fly the designated IFR approach - as shown in Stuart's photo above.

Living almost under the San Carlos IFR approach and having dealt with aircraft noise issues for almost 20 years (ten as Chair) while on the Palo Alto Airport Joint Community Relations Committee I have the following thoughts:

First, based on my experience, the FAA will be very slow to change anything, particularly any published approaches.

Second, simply moving the SurfAir flight paths to the East is just causing the noise to move east - not to Palo Alto but to EastPalo Alto and East Menlo Park. The fairness, politics and optics of dumping Atherton's noise problems on East Palo Alto and East Menlo Park are obvious.

Third, the best and easiest to implement change is for SurfAir to move the beginning of their approach to a point west of the Stanford stadium where the floor of the SFO Class B airspace is 4000 Ft rather than the 2500 Ft floor east of the stadium. From that more western point SurfAir can perform a Controlled Descent Approach in VFR conditions that will, at all times prior to short final, be higher than the current lower, step down high power approach path and will be a much lower powered, hence less noise, approach. The net effect of this approach would be to significantly reduce the noise footprint for ALL the communities under the Surf Air flight path.

In summary, in order to decrease aircraft noise you can either increase the distance from the ground or reduce the noise generated or both - the CDA I have suggested does both. Moving the flight path east to East Palo Alto and East Menlo Park does neither,


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 9, 2013 at 9:53 am

Jetman

Re: founders of Surf Air

OMG

He worked for Cheney?...the V.P. who is going to keep us safe from terrorism?!

Now he starts what approximates a commercial airlines that requires NO security checks...when just down the road at SFO they are still x-raying and scanning people?

Is this a "hall of mirrors" or what? Where is the logic of that?

I contacted Jackie Speir's office. I will be curious to see what her informed opinion is.

Tonight's meeting was covered on Ch 2 morning news this morning.



Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 9, 2013 at 10:04 am


Spelling correction: Speier. (Jackie Speier)


Posted by Resident, a resident of Menlo Park: Fair Oaks
on Dec 9, 2013 at 10:05 am

Why did no one complain about the King Air for the last 20 years, Now everyone is complaining about Surf Air. No one has anything personal against Surf Air, Who cares. The King Air either flies less flights or if I do see them flies higher different routes. Thank you to whoever flies the King Airs.

I have a lot of questions for Surf Air but I hope they give a straight answer to how many flights they project flying into San Carlos in the future? If it's what demand is and you have 6000 people on your waiting list how does that translate into numbers? As a venture start up and now with 6 months in operation If they say they don't know then I know the rest of their answers will be insincere.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 9, 2013 at 10:10 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"Why did no one complain about the King Air for the last 20 years,"

I can assure you that many people have complained in the past about the King Airs - I know because as Chair of the PAO JCRC all of those complaints came to me. The King Airs have become old news and people have become accustomed to them.

The same will happen with SurfAir - hopefully aided by some flight path changes and some operating procedures adjustments.


Posted by resident, a resident of another community
on Dec 9, 2013 at 10:20 am

West of Stanford Stadium is Palo Alto High School, and a private girl's high school. What a BAD IDEA. I think a lot of congress people will hear on that idea. Also our Santa Clara County Supervisor who used to be a state senator. I think you have less population over Atherton and no schools, no shopping center, no high rises or active city. The only thing that generates taxes in Atherton is property taxes.

There are no mysteries concerning Surf Air - you can go to Google and review all of the postings - there is one posting from a FCC expert who will tell you what the FCC specs are for this airline and the safety / experience trade-offs. Pictures of the owner who looks like a very young person - the one posing with the plane. They very clearly define themselves - you don't have to speculate on the whole marketing and financial theme. You do not have to speculate on the safety considerations - it is spelled out. They define themselves very clearly.
As a side note they allow only 4 trips per month. Divide your monthly fee by 4. I flew to San Diego for Thanksgiving and paid $298. - that is one-half. If you become members of the airlines you rack up savings, miles, free trips, and deals for their frequent flyers. I don't have a problem with security and enjoy the festivity in the airports. SFO is a shopping mall. That is part of the trip. I have flown in small planes - not such a great trip.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 9, 2013 at 10:26 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

MP Resident - note that the Take-off Field Length (MTOW) of a King Air is 3,300 ft. Which is longer than either the San Carlos (2600 ft) or Palo Alto (2443 ft) airports. Both the Pilatus and the King Air safely use San Carlos and Palo Alto simply by being at a lower than maximum take of weight.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 9, 2013 at 10:29 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"West of Stanford Stadium is Palo Alto High School, and a private girl's high school. "

Wrong - both of these are Northeast of the Stanford stadium.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 9, 2013 at 1:22 pm

resident:

what difference does it make what is out west or northeast of Stanford? Private aircraft (yes single engine) fly over those areas quite regularly. I've even flown over that area. I don't understand why you don't understand the difference. The PC-12 has a better safety record than most if not all of the single engine private aircraft flying over your head every day. Yet, you don't complain about those. I don't know why you can't simply acknowledge that your issue is with noise and not with safety. The facts regarding safety simply don't add up in favor of your opinion.

Your contention that an engine failure turns an airplane into a "missile" is false. Airplanes, all airplanes can and do glide. they don't just fall out of the sky nose first. that only happens in movies.

The bottom line is you bought a house under the flight path to an airport. There's going to be some noise. We live in a city. Have you instructed your gardener to stop using their leaf blower?


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 9, 2013 at 1:26 pm

Julie:

actually Surfair does require security checks. They run background checks on every member before allowing them to fly. How many airlines do that?

The CLEAR system that allows you to bypass security checks before boarding commercial flights works by running background checks on people that apply for that program. Once that's done you can board with no bag check, no x-ray, nothing. How unsafe!


Posted by Jetman, a resident of another community
on Dec 9, 2013 at 2:38 pm

Surf Air seems like a pretty small company. How does Surf Air do background checks?


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 9, 2013 at 2:46 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Background checks for private companies are usually done by private companies who specialize in such services.


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 9, 2013 at 3:19 pm


Forbes/August 2013/Contributor: John Goglia


With all the media hoopla surrounding Surf Air's all-you-can fly business model and comparisons to Netflix, there seems to be some basic information missing that passengers need to be aware of before they decide to spend thousands of dollars " between membership fees and a three-month commitment " to join up. That basic information is that Surf Air does not hold the same FAA air carrier certificate, and is not required to meet the same safety standards, as most scheduled airlines, including commuter or regional airlines.
Surf Air holds an FAA certificate issued under Part 135 of the Federal Aviation Regulations. While most commuter airlines were required to upgrade to Part 121 standards " after a series of accidents in the 1990s " scheduled operations using aircraft with 9 or less seats were allowed to continue to operate under Part 135. Since Surf Air operates three Pilatus aircraft " with less than 9 passenger seats "it is legally allowed to operate as a commuter under Part 135.
But there are significant differences in safety standards between Part 135 operations and Part 121, which include different pilot qualification requirements, crew member flight and duty and rest requirements, flight following, weather, airport and maintenance requirements. For example, a Part 135 commuter captain is not required to hold an airline transport pilot certificate, the highest pilot's license granted by the FAA, but can fly with just a commercial pilot certificate. In addition, the recent changes in pilot qualifications mandated by Congress as a direct response to the Colgan Air crash in Buffalo, New York in February 2009 " significantly increasing the number of hours required for co-pilots and increasing the number of hours required for co-pilots to upgrade to captain " would not apply to commuter operations under Part 135.
While Surf Air is experimenting with a new business model that may eliminate some of the hassles of flying, passengers should know that the company is not required to meet the same safety standards as the scheduled airlines they usually book tickets on. So when the New York Times quotes an elite United and Southwest flyer enthusiastically endorsing Surf Air's flying experience, someone needs to tell her she's traded some significant safety standards for convenience. Passengers have every right to make those trade-offs - they should just be knowingly made.


Posted by Jetman, a resident of another community
on Dec 9, 2013 at 5:46 pm

Re: Forbes/August 2013/Contributor: John Goglia

The Forbes article focuses on passenger safety, but when these planes are flying the same route 8-10 times per day, the safety standard Surf Air is required to meet, should be of concern to the people on the ground under these flights as well.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 9, 2013 at 5:51 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

I strongly suspect that SurfAir is meeting most, if not all, of the 121 requirements and would be very surprised if any of their pilots was not ATP rated. The one pilot I could check on had 4400hrs with 2000 as PIC of PC-12s incl part135 &121 - that is very well qualified!


Posted by Jetman, a resident of another community
on Dec 9, 2013 at 6:19 pm

The CLEAR system only automates the identity check portion of the security process. Passengers still need to go through the regular screening. Web Link

"In order to prevent a terrorist with a clean background from compromising the system, the TSA requires that registered travelers undergo the normal TSA screening (baggage x-ray and personal metal detector), at the RT kiosk checkpoint. Additionally, Registered Travelers are not exempt from random secondary screening and may not bring prohibited items into secure areas of terminals." Web Link


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 9, 2013 at 6:32 pm

Julie:

did you bother reading the comments below the one sided article? Especially those from one of the founders of Surfair answering many if not all of the straw men Goglia put up? Didn't think so.

No, Surfair is not required to meet Part 121 Standards, but as a company philosophy, they go the extra mile so that they DO. Their pilots are ATP rated. They fly two pilots in an aircraft rated for single pilot operations, they aren't required to do so. They have maintenance schedules similar to those of 121 carriers.

Sorry, safety is not an problem with Surfair. As I said before, I would have no problem flying on, putting my family on or even putting my 2 1/2 year old grandson on any of Surfair's aircraft. I would be far more concerned for my family's safety while they are driving to and from the airport. The facts simply bear out that the car drive to and from is more dangerous than the flight. That applies to private aircraft as well.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 9, 2013 at 6:48 pm

Jetman:

I stand corrected. Thank you.


Posted by Resident, a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Dec 9, 2013 at 9:26 pm

Does anyone know the other sites being used to post on re; Surf Air?


Posted by Michael G. Stogner, a resident of another community
on Dec 9, 2013 at 9:44 pm

2 sites that were mentioned at the meeting tonight were Nextdoor.com and Change.com


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 10, 2013 at 11:06 am

Menlo Voter

According to the information that Jetman provided, even with the CLEAR system TSA screenings are still required.

Surf Air says no, not on their airlines:

·" To further promote safety among Surf Air members (and because they aren't required to pass through TSA screenings before boarding) we run background checks on every member who flies with us"

So...I don't know the definitive answer.

I did read the comments below John Goglia's article.

I was at the meeting last night when a person living in the community asked a Surf Air pilot/manager if Surf Air is certified Part 121 or whether they are Part 135.

He responded that they are not Part 121. They are certified Part 135.

Unless I misunderstood his answer, they are not Part 121.

And, yes, I read what the co-founder of SurfAir said about his airlines trying to match or approximate or even supersede Part 121 requirements.



Posted by Michael G. Stogner, a resident of another community
on Dec 10, 2013 at 2:04 pm

I was really impressed with the meeting last night, I had to leave before it was over, but I saw a lot of people and most of them were there to solve this, including the people who operate the airplanes in question. I know I have never seen this before so I say Good Job everyone.


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 10, 2013 at 2:16 pm

Re:Posted by Michael G. Stogner, a resident of another community
13 hours ago
2 sites that were mentioned at the meeting tonight were Nextdoor.com and Change.com

Just a FYI: it's. www.change.org

Web Link


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 10, 2013 at 5:46 pm

Julie:

as I noted above. Surfair is a Part 135 operator, but they are following Part 121 (stricter) procedures. The funny thing being that one of the reasons they are flying the approach they are flying is for safety.


Posted by Resident, a resident of another community
on Dec 10, 2013 at 11:44 pm

I attended the meeting last night and was very impressed. The organization of the meeting was great and I think every one who had something to say was able to. The speakers were generally from the Atherton area so incoming SFO traffic is already lined up over the bay at this point and was not a problem. Meanwhile back in PA the SFO incoming in part is arriving west to east and making their turn up into the northbound arriving for SFO. Surf is working south to north over Middlefield so there really a lot of cross traffic and noise in the PA area.
One concern is that San Carlos says it will be available 24 hours a day. San Jose Airport has a 11:00 PM Curfew due to noise - so there is a precedent for noise control.
Surf is going to work on moving their approach over 101. I have talked to other pilots who think Surf could come up the bay then cut over to San Carlos to eliminate the problem - they would be lower than the SFO traffic.

I am impressed with the running of the meeting and especially the mayor of Menlo Park who wants the problems resolved. There was a discussion of a 2:30 AM flight - no more of those.


Posted by Resident, a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Dec 11, 2013 at 12:29 am


Did anyone else at the meeting last night hear Surf Air say they were planning on "basing" a crew at San Carlos Airport? Think expansion Think numbers.

Is there anyone out there foolish enough to think Surf Air's business plan would allow them to limit the number of flights into any Airport. They are a for profit corporation. With heavy hitter investors.

The only limit on the number of flights will be the based on the demand for those flights. More flights more profit. Nothing wrong with that except the impact on the people who live below the flight path.

If you were at the meeting last night welcome to the corporate world of lip service. They will outlast you as an affected resident. You can set up as many working groups or sub committees as you want. They are professionals at this. You are ametures

If six flights a day bothers you, Think 20,30,40, 50.....flights a day. Perfectly legal perfectly within their rights. When they expand to Sacramento, Tahoe, Napa, Las Vegas, Hawthorne etc. San Carlos will change from a destination airport to a hub.

At the meeting last night the Mayor of Menlo Park spoke forcefully about not allowing this to happen over his city. I wish him luck. Your only chance to stop Surf Air flying into San Carlos is to challenge them on safety.

My sympathies go out to the residents of North Fair Oaks, You are the worst affected and least represented. Organize be relentless reaching out to your County Supervisors, Congress state and National, the FAA, Surf Air, The Airport Operation staff,the media, not social media, real media, hire aviation experts that can articulate the dangers of such a large plane flying at such a low altitude. This battle is not over but it will be soon as they can wait you out, with time and endless meetings. It's what they do and they do it well.


Posted by Michael G. Stogner, a resident of another community
on Dec 11, 2013 at 6:49 am

Resident asked.
"Did anyone else at the meeting last night hear Surf Air say they were planning on "basing" a crew at San Carlos Airport?"

I heard the speaker say that they are basing....not planning on basing. I also heard the Mayor of Menlo Park express his strong desire to cancel the 5AM flight. I thought that was a little over the top since San Carlos Airport operates 24 hours a day.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 11, 2013 at 7:41 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"One concern is that San Carlos says it will be available 24 hours a day. San Jose Airport has a 11:00 PM Curfew due to noise - so there is a precedent for noise control. "

That is not a precedent as it applies only to high noise level pure jets and would not apply to the Pilatus.

"At the meeting last night the Mayor of Menlo Park spoke forcefully about not allowing this to happen over his city. " It in unfortunate if elected officials make assurances that they have NO ability to keep. The city has no control and minimal influence on this issue.

The solution to this problem is not to shove over someone else's neighborhood but to work with SurfAir to modify their vertical approach profile in VFR weather and to accept that they MUST fly the current IFR approach in low visibility conditions FOR PURPOSES OF SAFETY.


Posted by get real Councils, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 11, 2013 at 8:44 am

Resident (Linfield Oaks) says

"If six flights a day bothers you, Think 20,30,40, 50.....flights a day. Perfectly legal perfectly within their rights. When they expand to Sacramento, Tahoe, Napa, Las Vegas, Hawthorne etc. San Carlos will change from a destination airport to a hub."

After going to the meeting this post really resonates with me. The meeting I suppose is necessary to establish community support but it is just blah,blah. Resident is right the content of the meeting was just lip service by Surf Air and group therapy by those offering comments. Nothing will come of this meeting except more meetings and studies. Both the councils of Menlo Park and Atherton and other surrounding affected communities might as well hire attorneys at this stage specializing in area of the law that will stop Surf Air from operating from San Carlos. Eventually this is where it will end as there is no solution to the noise.
Ultimately Atherton had to resort (with many others) to legal action (successfully) against HSR and by all accounts HSR is only slightly alive.
Lets cut to the chase and cut the head off this snake now.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 11, 2013 at 9:25 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

" Both the councils of Menlo Park and Atherton and other surrounding affected communities might as well hire attorneys at this stage specializing in area of the law that will stop Surf Air from operating from San Carlos"

Pursuing that is a fool's errand and a waste of taxpayers money - it will not happen.

As previously noted the Federal laws preempt almost all local control of aircraft noise.
"
U.S. SUPREME COURT

CITY OF BURBANK et al.
v.
LOCKHEED AIR TERMINAL, INC., et al.

Appeal from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
No. 71-1637

Argued February 20, 1973
Decided May 14, 1973


COURT'S SYNOPSIS: Appellees sought an injunction against enforcement of a Burbank city ordinance placing an 11 p.m. to 7 a.m. curfew on jet flights from the Hollywood-Burbank Airport. The District Court found the ordinance unconstitutional on Supremacy Clause and Commerce Clause grounds, and the Court of Appeals affirmed on the basis of the Supremacy Clause, with respect to both pre-emption and conflict. Held: In light of the pervasive nature of the scheme of federal regulation of aircraft noise, as reaffirmed and reinforced by the Noise Control Act of 1972, the Federal Aviation Administration, now in conjunction with the Environmental Protection Agency, has full control over aircraft noise, pre-empting state and local control. "

Note the phrase "has FULL control over aircraft noise..."


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 11, 2013 at 10:50 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"They are certified Part 135."
They require their Captains to hold ATP certificates and they operate every flight with a copilot - neither is required by Part 135.


Posted by get real Councils, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 11, 2013 at 10:54 am

Fools errand? You cite one case but there is so much case law on this subject that it is not black and white as you like things, Peter.
The point is that even though the FAA might be the final word there are all sorts of circumstances in between and agencies creating the rules that may be sued. The case of San Jose airport restricting jet traffic at night (Larry Ellison gave up fighting that) is one example as well as the quiet bridge approach at SFO (Atherton a party to this rule change made some years ago).
In any event Peter before you make sweeping statements like "fools errand" you might read the following document and care law from the FAA.

Web Link


Posted by resident, a resident of another community
on Dec 11, 2013 at 11:00 am

Was Mr. Carpenter at the meeting? Not sure what the agenda here is - you are defending their right to irritate everyone? This is the only airline that has managed to cause a disturbance that brings so many people out.

Yes - I did hear that Surf is locating people in San Carlos. I also know that San Carlos - the city - wants to build a hotel. I think this whole event is backed by the city. Also - the funding that the airport keeps alluding to - both federal and commercial - it is a profit center for the city. Time to tap into local politicians and find out what the county of San Mateo thinks about all of this.

As to Lockheed in Burbank - half the population in that area worked for Lockheed and are very proud of it. Today the city of Burbank enjoys increased tax base from all of the corporations that have subsidiaries in that local because of the airport.
Surf will not do the same for San Carlos - the proximity to SFO will limit their expansion.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 11, 2013 at 11:06 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"Not sure what the agenda here is" - Primarily to help interested individuals understand the facts and the law.


"you are defending their right to irritate everyone? "
No, I am just making it clear the the FAA has FULL control of this issue.

And it is my opinion that shifting the perceived noise problem to less vocal and less wealthy communities is both selfish and wrong.

And, as frequently noted above, I think that there are better solutions my modifying, in VFR conditions, the vertical profile of the KSQL approach.


Posted by get real Councils, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 11, 2013 at 11:40 am

Quote from the FAA policy on noise and the responsibility of airport proprietors (San Carlos Airport in this case)

C. Legal Responsibilities of Airport Proprietors

The responsibilities of state and local governments as airport proprietors are far less restricted. Under the Supreme Court decision in Griggs v. Allegheny County, 369 U.S. 84 (1962), proprietors are liable for aircraft noise damages resulting from operations from their airport. The proprietor, the court reasoned, planned the location of the airport, the direction and length of the runways, and has the ability to acquire more land around the airport. From this control flows the liability, based on the constitutional requirement of just compensation for property taken for a public purpose. The Court concluded: "Respondent in designing the Greater Pittsburgh Airport had to acquire some private property. Our conclusion is that by constitutional standards it did not acquire enough," The role of the proprietor described by the Court remains the same today.

But the proprietor's responsibilities do not end there. A three judge district court observed in Air Transport Association v. Crotti, 389 F. Supp. 58 (N.D. Cal., 1975):

"It is now firmly established that the airport proprietor is responsible for the consequences which attend his operation of a public airport; his right to control the use of the airport, is a necessary concomitant, whether it be directed by state police power or by his own initiative .... That correlating right of proprietorship control is recognized and exempted from judicially declared federal preemption by footnote 14 [of the Burbank opinion] . Manifestly, such proprietary control necessarily includes the basic right to determine the type of air service a given airport proprietor wants its facilities to provide, as well as the type of aircraft to utilize those facilities...."
The Crotti case upheld in part a California airport noise statute imposing noise abatement duties on airport proprietors and established the principle that a state statute could reach proprietors that are governmental agencies and hence arms of the state. The Burbank preemption rule thus has not extended to proprietors, except with respect to regulations that actually affect the flight of aircraft. The portion of the California statute struck down by the court provided for criminal sanctions against the operator of an aircraft that exceed a single-event noise standard on takeoff or landing, a clear interference with the FAA's control over flight operations in the navigable airspace.

The Crotti principle has recently been upheld in National Aviation v. City of Hayward, No. C-75-2279 RFP (N.D. Cal., July 13, 1976), a case in which an air freight company sought to enjoin a curfew on noisier aircraft imposed at the municipally owned Hayward Air Terminal in California. The court addressed squarely the legal issue of the rights of a proprietor and found that the curfew had not been preempted:

[T]his court cannot, in light of the clear Congressional statement that the amendments to the Federal Aviation Act were not designed to and would not prevent airport proprietors from excluding any aircraft on the basis of noise considerations, make the same findings [as the Burbank Court] with respect to regulations adopted by municipal airport proprietors..." Slip opinion, 14, citing S. Rep. No. 1353, 90th Cong., 2d Sess., 6-7.

The court went on to indicate that the FAA had the authority to preempt such proprietor regulation, although it had not yet exercised it. The court also found that the ordinance, which required some of the plaintiff's aircraft to use another airport between 11 p.m. and 7 a.m., had an effect on interstate commerce, but that the effect was:

"...incidental at best and clearly not excessive when weighed against the legitimate and concededly laudable goal of controlling the noise levels at the Hayward Air Terminal during late evening and morning hours." Slip opinion, 19.
The power thus left to the proprietor -- to control what types of aircraft use its airports, to impose curfews or other use restrictions, and, subject to FAA approval, to regulate runway use and flight paths -- is not unlimited. Though not preempted, the proprietor is subject to two important Constitutional restrictions. He first may not take any action that imposes an undue burden on interstate or foreign commerce and, second may not unjustly discriminate between different categories of airport users.

These limitations on the proprietor's control over the use of the airport have not been addressed by the Supreme Court, and it remains unclear the extent to which Constitutional limitations would prevent some of the restrictions that have been imposed or proposed by proprietors in recent years.

Our concept of the legal framework underlying this policy statement is that proprietors retain the flexibility to impose such restrictions if they do not violate any Constitutional proscription. We have been urged to undertake -- and have considered carefully and rejected -- full and complete federal preemption of the field of aviation noise abatement. In our judgment the control and reduction of airport noise must remain a shared responsibility among airport proprietors, users, and governments.

The legal framework with respect to noise may be summarized as follows:

1.The federal government has preempted the areas of airspace use and management, air traffic control, safety and the regulation of aircraft noise at its source. The federal government also has substantial power to influence airport development through its administration of the Airport and Airway Development Program.

2.Other powers and authorities to control airport noise rest with the airport proprietor - including the power to select an airport site, acquire land, assure compatible land use, and control airport design, scheduling and operations -- subject only to Constitutional prohibitions against creation of an undue burden on interstate and foreign commerce, unjust discrimination, and interference with exclusive federal regulatory responsibilities over safety and airspace management.

3. State and local governments may protect their citizens through land use controls and other police power measures not affecting aircraft operations. In addition, to the extent they are airport proprietors, they have the powers described in paragraph 2.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 11, 2013 at 11:53 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

The problem with the proprietor, the City of San Carlos, attempting to exclude a particular type of aircraft or operation is that the city has for years entered into contractually agreements with the FAA in order to receive Airport Improvement Grants that preclude it from taking such actions. These obligations extend for, usually, 20 years from the date of the latest grant accepted.


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 11, 2013 at 11:54 am


I had better jump in here before I have too many posts to respond to. Actually, after attending the meeting on Monday night I lost my will to say anything more.

Resident: I am feeling and thinking the same things as you.

BUT: I think, for the most part, Peter Carpenter knows what he's talking about. He is stating some "hard to accept" facts and realities.

BUT: That said, I also believe "Never say never".

I was heartsick when (at the meeting) Surf Air Manager made the joke about only flying over the same house once...or...hold on....twice in the same day.

I have a good sense of humor ordinarily. But his response indicated to me just how little he is seriously taking our discomfort. He doesn't have to take it seriously.

Surf Air has been said to be "disruptive"---that is. They are really shaking up the airlines industry. The word "disruptive", a new buzzword in the corporate world meaning good or innovative.

I say this airlines is "dysfunctional" AND disruptive---but in the traditional meaning of the word. Dysfunctional because it requires so much of our attention. It may just be the new dripping faucet in our lives: even when it's quiet, we wait in expectancy for the next drop. We may have to live with it. The FAA says we can't call the plumber.

Have we had a minute of peace since all of this started? Did we want to go to a meeting on a Monday night in 37 degree weather?

I have not seen such public discontent since Colombia Hospitals---a for profit hospital with a shaky reputation---wanted to take over Sequioa Hospital in Redwood City, I think about 20 years ago. Thank goodness they didn't succeed, thanks to community protest and investigation of there track record.

Same thing: all of a sudden they appeared on the scene.
Until the residents of the community said: Wait a minute here---Not so fast!

But then, the FAA was not a factor.

As far as law suits, I'm no expert. Peter might be right. It doesn't have to be a City lawsuit though.

Last but not least, I'm sure that there are alot of community residents who are happy that Surf Air is in town.


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 11, 2013 at 12:09 pm


To: get real councils

Re: FAA information

Thank You !


Posted by Matt, a resident of Atherton: West Atherton
on Dec 11, 2013 at 12:14 pm

People are so hysterical that they won't listen to reason or facts. The SurfAir CEO wasn't making callous jokes about flying over people's houses. His point was, they are flying the exact routes that the FAA requires them to fly. Otherwise known as obeying the rules.

The FAA REQUIRES them to fly this flight path. Period. There is no choice. If the FAA would let them come in over the bay, they would. Of course, that would alleviate about 5 flights a day for you, and it would also compromise public safety by putting planes too close to SFO traffic, but what do you care? It's all about your own backyards.

Here's another fact to consider: SurfAir is under no obligation to attend these ridiculous, one-sided hearings. They chose to attend, and have spent lots of time dealing with these complaints because they actually care about the community and want to do whatever they can to alleviate noise.

Only in the perverse, privileged logic of Atherton could this be considered a bad thing.


Posted by get real Councils, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 11, 2013 at 12:32 pm

Peter may well be right in the legal obligations of San Carlos Airport in accepting money from the Federal Government by agreeing to Grant Assurances. I have read the boilerplate Grant document three times and think there is enough wiggle room on the noise abatement and operations etc that Grant Assurances do not trump the FAA policy on noise abatement (linked above). It would seem most public airport accept the free money provided by the government and then proceed to agree to many covenants. How they might be interpreted against other aviation rules and airport practices is a likely area for attorneys.
Here is the Grant Practices boilerplate but am unable to find exactly what San Carlos signed.
Believe they signed many Grant Assurances at various times.

Web Link


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 11, 2013 at 12:39 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Here is the pertinent and definitive clause which is in ALL Airport Improvement Grant agreements:

"22. Economic Nondiscrimination.
a. It will make the airport available as an airport for public use on reasonable terms and without unjust discrimination to all types, kinds and classes of aeronautical activities, including commercial aeronautical activities offering services to the public at the airport."

That is pretty clear.


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 11, 2013 at 12:52 pm

Matt:

Re: "SurfAir is under no obligation to attend these ridiculous, one-sided hearings"

It seems to me that Surf Air is under few obligations.

Forget the Atherton angle: I was born and raised in a very modest Redwood City neighborhood---and now live in another Redwood City neighborhood in a 1700 S.F. house.

We are not "hysterical". We're being hassled by sound.

And we don't like it. We don't think it's right.

RE: You say: "People are so hysterical that they won't listen to reason or facts"

I say: Our ears are tired. (Since everyone is trying to lighten things up with a little harmless humor...I will add to that)


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 11, 2013 at 12:59 pm


Peter Carpenter:

Re: "a. It will make the airport available as an airport for public use"

Are you sure that a membership airlines would fit the classification of "public use"?


Posted by get real Councils, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 11, 2013 at 1:37 pm

Peter quotes

"22. Economic Nondiscrimination.
a. It will make the airport available as an airport for public use on reasonable terms and without unjust discrimination to all types, kinds and classes of aeronautical activities, including commercial aeronautical activities offering services to the public at the airport."

That is pretty clear.

I would agree it is pretty clear but at the same time the word"reasonable" leaves a big back door. It is reasonable to allow a commercial operator to run 20 landings a day or more over a 24 hour period (day and night). How about 30 or 40?
Other factors like capacity on landings and takeoffs etc, parking,fire services and ground activities also must be reasonable. I also believe the tower is not manned 24 hours a day so that might be a need to restrict commercial activities.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 11, 2013 at 1:49 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

The FAA gets to determine what is "reasonable" and they have never permitted actions directed at a single operator that did not also apply to everyone else. San Carlos flight school routinely have 50-100 operations per day including when the tower is closed.

Lots of communities have spent lots of legal fees on this and, as far as I can find, they have never won the right to preempt the FAA.. It is certainly not how I would like to see our local tax dollars spent.


Posted by coh, a resident of Atherton: West Atherton
on Dec 11, 2013 at 2:09 pm

If we are starting teams, I'm on Team Peter Carpenter!

Even the MAmish hae accidents in their buggies. Unless you want to go back to all foot-traffic, get over it. I used to live in San Bruno and then Burlingame - you want to talk airport noise? Go there. 24/7 - and being in the sound cloud of the landings you don't know from noise with those little 'puddle jumpers' y'all are complaining about. Besides, San Carlos closes at night.

Y'all complained about the train bells at intersections - now, unless you are RIGHT NEXT TO THEM, you can't hear them they are so muted. Wonder why so MANY pedestrian deaths on the tracks these days??


Posted by resident, a resident of another community
on Dec 11, 2013 at 2:24 pm

Matt - you sound like someone who has already made the investment and are getting defensive about it. You have three months to pull out - unless you are one of the employees. The CEO was not at the meeting - the general manager was.
Bottom line is you only get 4 trips per month for what you pay - that is not a BIG SAVINGS compared to being a member of any airline like Southwest that will throw all kind of bargains at you. If you rode Southwest 4 times a month then you would have a substantial number of free trips to anywhere.
Landing in San Carlos or Hawthorne has NO APPEAL. The only thing you are paying for is not going through the TSA line. Anyone who is paying to avoid the TSA line has some real problems - or is carrying something that would cause a problem. My thinking says this is where this whole thing is going.
Especially if they are landing at weird times of night - there is no car rental at weird times of night for an airport the size of San Carlos. I have already checked out the airport - I know what is there.

As to flying over the bay lower than the commercial flight line is it done in Hawaii - they work very hard to keep air traffic sideways from the major hotels on the beaches. I don't think the FAA makes up different rules for different states. Their goal is to reduce congestion, confusion and traffic. That is the approach to come from. It can be done. On a case by case basis there is a very good case here. We are talking 2013 here.

Peter - are you an employee of Surf? Or receiving any benefits for warding everyone off any negotiation on this matter? Everything is negotiable. I like the mayor of Menlo Park - I think he can negotiate a workable approach.
He comes from the "disruptive" generation - I will give him points for disrupting the disrupters.
All in all it was good meeting and the general manager who came seems like a good guy who understand the problem. I think the city can work with him. I think he gets it. He has only been onboard for a month - I think he can provide good direction to the pilots.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 11, 2013 at 2:33 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Peter - are you an employee of Surf? Or receiving any benefits for warding everyone off any negotiation on this matter?

N0 and NO

I just have a preference for fact based arguments. And I have a lot of personal experience in this issue of airplane noise and local control of same.

Resident - who are you and who pays you?


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 11, 2013 at 3:05 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

BTW - it helps to read the entire thread. I was among the first to advocate negotiation:

Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Nov 19, 2013 at 9:58 am
Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

I was a project manager on the development of the world's first silent airplane (Prize Crew QT-1) developed by ARPA and have spent almost 20 years , 10 as chair, on the Joint Community Relations Committee (JCRC) at the Palo Alto airport. I understand the physics of airplane noise from my ARPA work and I deeply understand the social and political aspects of airplane noise from my JCRC work. During my ten years as Chair of the JCRC I personally talked to every person who complained of aircraft noise. Almost all of the solvable noise problems were dealt with by changing pilot behavior.



My lessons from this experience are:


1 The FAA has virtually no interest in noise issues and will NOT be your 'noise police' . Their sole concern with these flights is that they be conducted safely.

2 The airport has NO control over SurfAir's operation once a SurfAir plane leaves the ground. As a long time recipient of FAA Airport Improvement Program grants San Carlos Airport is prohibited from denying use to any airplane that can safely operate from the airport.

3 The best, and virtually only approach, is to work with SurfAir to get their pilots to adopt Controlled Descent Approach procedures.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 11, 2013 at 3:15 pm

To those that think you can sue the FAA into submission, I suggest you talk to the residents of Redwood Shores who, a number of years ago, got all up in arms about noise at San Carlos. They had San Mateo politicians all riled up. They were going to sue. The county was going to pass an ordinance. When the dust settled, the FAA said you can't do it, we control it, you accepted grants from us and you have nothing to say about it. Nothing changed. A lot of people wasted a lot of time, money and angst on something they could do nothing about.


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 11, 2013 at 4:16 pm


Menlo Voter:

Re: Redwood Shores

Part of my education was from my mother, in the form of proverbs. She always used to say:

"It is always better to learn on the shoulders of others---to see what their experience has been, before potentially making the same mistake they have."

So what you say may be a useful cautionary tale.

People may start to wonder what side of this issue I am aligning myself with. I think I've made myself clear on that.

There is alot to think about here. But what's true is true.


Posted by neighborhood, a resident of another community
on Dec 11, 2013 at 6:04 pm

Julie -- what was the point of that last weird post? I think Mr. Carpenter and the others who presented the FAA facts over and over again have been pretty clear. What part of "No" do you not understand?

There are airports all over the Bay Area. Get used to it, or -- if you can't -- move to a rural area. With all that is going on in this crazy world, try to get some perspective.


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 11, 2013 at 6:24 pm

Neighborhood:

Re: "What part of "No" do you not understand?"

I have no idea what you mean by this. I read and understood the information regarding the FAA.

And, by the way, I have nothing but respect for Peter Carpenter and have stated as much in my posts.

When Menlo Voter posted that it would be an exercise in futility to try to legally challenge the FAA, I agreed with her.

So...whose posts are you reading?? Not mine. Unless you have misinterpreted my statements.


Posted by Diane, a resident of another community
on Dec 11, 2013 at 7:00 pm

Hey Neighborhood,

I thought Julie's post was pretty clear. We learn from others mistakes or failures (as well as our own). Therefore, where others have failed, armed with the knowledge of their experience, perhaps we have a better chance of succeeding.

Trust me, we all understand the meaning of no, but in this case, some of us do not accept that.

I'll leave this for Julie: "Where there's a will, there's a way". Don't let any bully try to shut you up. Stand firm and fight on!!


Posted by Downtowner, a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Dec 11, 2013 at 8:16 pm

Noise always gets worse as population density increases. All of it. Freeways, traffic on suburban streets, leaf blowers, sirens, construction, etc. It also takes about twice as long to get into & out of SFO & SJC as it did 20 years ago. There's a clear time-saving & convenience factor for some to use San Carlos airport for some short flights. Bypassing SFO or SJC is very appealing since, unlike someone upthread, most of us don't view time spent at SFO another shopping mall opportunity & just want to get to our destinations as efficiently as possible.

Please consider the impact our local population growth has on the issue of noise. Please think very hard about promoting or allowing increased housing density on the Peninsula. The audio disturbances this thread discusses will get worse - more cars, small aviation planes and leafblowers & gas mowers will be used by more people here. Think hard about who you vote for and watch out for your local planning commissions. Beware of zoning changes or conditional use permits.

Surf Air wouldn't find a market here if it didn't fill a need to facilitate transportation between smaller towns. This is a harbinger of more to come unless there's a stop to ongoing mass housing development.

I feel the pain of noise pollution. In years past, the incoming flight from Japan @ 5 am (route/height later changed in response to complaints) and some distinctive sounding, single engine plane out of San Carlos (maybe giving lessons over MP early on weekend mornings) which needed a muffler drove me nuts. My noise hotline phone calls changed nothing.

For the sake of peace, quiet, and even health & safety, please don't support high-rise or high density residential construction.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 11, 2013 at 8:42 pm

Diane:

I think Julie is saying to learn from others and cut your losses. The FAA is not going to provide you any relief. They are not interested in noise control, nor do they care. Safety is their only concern. The people of Redwood Shores found this out the hard way. Google it.

MR Menlo Voter


Posted by Jetman, a resident of another community
on Dec 11, 2013 at 8:59 pm

"The FAA has been cited as an example of regulatory capture, in which the airline industry openly dictates to its regulators its governing rules, arranging for not only beneficial regulation but placing key people to head these regulators" Web Link

The FAA is not solely concerned with safety. The FAA works to advance a broad range of issues that are in the interest of the Airline Industry, while ignoring it mandated role in "developing and carrying out programs to control aircraft noise and other environmental effects of civil aviation." Web Link


Posted by Diane, a resident of another community
on Dec 11, 2013 at 9:14 pm

Menlo Voter,

Nothing worth fighting for comes easy. Rules, regulations, laws can change if there are enough people who want them changed and are willing to put in the time and effort to get them changed.

Don't count on Julie curling up in a little ball and giving up any time soon. :)


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 11, 2013 at 9:17 pm

Diane:

you and Julie can knock yourselves out. Let me know how it works out for you.


Posted by matt, a resident of Atherton: West Atherton
on Dec 11, 2013 at 9:31 pm

Resident,

I have to say, you really have no idea what you're talking about. As I've stated in previous posts, I live directly in the flight path of all the planes coming into our area, and I am also a member of SurfAir. So I can see this from both sides.

Let me give you the facts, since you seem unable or unwilling to process them.

Flying out of San Jose or SFO costs far more than on SurfAir. Even the cheapest flights are about $300 round trip. Plus there are change fees if you need to switch your flight, which I frequently do. Taxis are very expensive and so is long-term parking. On SurfAir, customers avoid all of these fees so it's incredibly reasonably priced compared to others.

In addition, SurfAir has unlimited flights. You can only hold 4 reservations at any one time, but there's no monthly limit as you claim. You just re-book new flights as you take the other ones. I actually do 4 flights a week so I can get home and see my family.

As for landing at "weird times of the night"... The last SurfAir flight presently lands at about 10PM. Maybe that's a weird time of night for you, but for the rest of us, that's pretty normal.

Then again, why am I bothering to explain facts to someone who plainly has no interest in listening?




Posted by Resident, a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Dec 12, 2013 at 12:05 am

To those who say forget it. Think positive. Anything can be accomplished when good people come together for a just cause.
Surf Air will not be kept out of San Carlos. Nor will they change the type of plane they fly. These planes cost well over 3 million dollars each.

When Surf Air makes commitments in those meetings hold them to it. Get it in writing.

It's unfortunate it may take an accident to make real changes to their approach to the airport. I would like to hear from some aviation experts other than Peter. Peter I have total respect for your history but please quit telling us your credentials and it Can't be done. It's getting boring and repetetive. I've heard you say twenty five times that the FAA can't and won't change the approach. Let's start with they can and work on how we accomplish doing it.
San Carlos Airport already has a noise abatement program in place. Don't say it can't be modified

Personally I see this is a safety issue. I think the FAA made a mistake when they approved this approach. Did money, power, influence play a role in their decision to grant this approval? Only a very small group of people would know.

Can someone who has the knowledge and experience do some models on what the procedures are along with the results of a mechanical failure on the last 5 miles of their approach. I think the cities affected, Menlo Park, Atherton, Redwood City, unincorporated Fair Oaks area should hire an expert so do these models. An independent person, not Surf Airs'.

I know first hand what it's like as a pilot to lose an engine in flight. There are a prescribed set of procedures that are followed specific to each aircraft. It takes time to go through the list. It must be followed. Don't say it can't happen. It does. I know. I was fortunate and was able to restart the engine but I was at an altitude high enough to make the recovery work.

Don't say the Pilatus is such a safe plane it can't have an engine failure or one of many other mechanical failures or it's such a small chance we shouldn't worry about it. There have been 29 accidents and 74 fatalities passengers and people on the ground worldwide in this plane as a result. I know our skies are filled with a lot of aircraft big and small overhead. Is that an excuse for allowing these planes to fly in an unsafe manner. I have aviation experience. I know this type of plane at this speed and low altitude will allow the pilots very little time to go through their recovery procedures. There is no place to land on this route in the event of a loss of power, engine failure, or 25 other things that can go wrong leaving the pilots seconds to realize and react.

There are modifications that can be made very simply to lower the chance of an accident on this approach or allow more time for the pilots to respond.

I wouldn't fly on one of these planes, I wouldn't let my kids go to a school under this flight path, nor would I insure this business under the current flight configuration, I don't oppose general aviation or commercial airlines. However both should be operated in the most safe configuration available and the route, speed and altitude Surf currently flies are unsafe. I'm not trying to keep Surf Air out of San Carlos I just want them to have the respect for us to fly in the most safe manner possible. For all the naysayers safety is the FAA's number one priority. Hold them accountable. Just because they approved it doesn't mean it can't be modified.

I take this very seriously. If you can't say something constructive, please don't respond, No smart aleck remarks, hog farms, move to the country, or people who say it can't be done. I'm tired of reading it. Let's have an adult conversation.


Posted by get real Councils, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 12, 2013 at 6:19 am

Resident, your last post is excellent re adult conversation.Unfortunately, this forum often deteriorates, and it is hard to squeeze in much when Peter Carpenter begins to dominate. He does make good comments at times but brooks no disagreement and then irritates and becomes repetitive. Always will need to have the last word on any subject.
While Peter states the FAA is not interested in noise, I disagree and along with safety I think these are the two issues to tackle. At the last meeting the FAA, I believe, had four or five people present so I infer they are not treating this issue lightly. As Rick DeGolia said at the meeting that this issue is about noise and that is why there were so many people present.
The world of the FAA is different and they are experts at rules and regulations. Unless you are in the aviation industry one is overwhelmed trying to understand this stuff but it is clear that this the playground of attorneys and bureaucrats.
As in many public disagreements like HSR, libraries in the park etc there are legal actions, required public hearings,and EIR's that considerably delay and cost money. In the case of Surf Air they are a start up and appear to be adequately funded for the moment but probably not making money at this stage. Theri three aircraft are leased. The last thing they need is a costly legal battle but this is where Atherton and Menlo Park should go after the "make nice" talks. It makes little difference who will prevail...it will delay and this is a negotiating tactic and wear them down financially.
In any event here is the FAA page on noise. It sort of looks like they are interested.
Web Link


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 12, 2013 at 6:20 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Resident, just to finish out last conversation - Resident - who are you and who pays you?

" I've heard you say twenty five times that the FAA can't and won't change the approach '

If you look carefully at the Bay Area airspace you will find that it is complex, multilayered, and irregularly shaped to separate planes flying and out of the Bay area airports. It is like an upside down wedding cage over SFO with two partial side cakes over Oakland and San Jose.

A two dimensional representation here showing the VFR vs IFR portion of the cake and which airport controls which chunk of space and the communication requirements for eash space. Web Link

In addition there are hundreds of approved IFR (airways)paths through and to Bay area airports'.

So imagine that strange upside down wedding cake with a lot of long needles (airways and flight paths)being pushed thought it - it is the air traffic controller's job to make sure that those needles don't come even close to each other. It is in this context that moving the IFR approach into San Carlos, i.e. one of the needles becomes problematic. And if the reason for moving is simply to transfer noise from on neighborhood to another with the possibility of then having less separation from other flight paths that would be a bad safety decision in return for no net noise reduction - and that the FAA will NOT do.

Some people feel that any planes flying overhead are dangerous to people on the ground = you have a much better chance of being killed in a car accident or a murder or a lightning strike than by a falling airplane.


And it is my opinion that shifting the perceived noise problem to less vocal and less wealthy communities is both selfish and wrong.

And, as frequently noted above, I think that there are better solutions my modifying, in VFR conditions, the vertical profile of the KSQL approach.



Posted by get real Councils, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 12, 2013 at 6:52 am

For the record airplanes do crash in Atherton. This is a summary of a accident report of the accident in 1994 of a Cessna 152 that came down at the intersection of Watkins Av and Milldefield Rd. The wreckage as I recall was gone by morning

Final Report on Probabable Cause of Crash
On October 14, 1994, at 2215 Pacific daylight time, a Cessna 152, N67358, collided with power lines and trees while attempting a night forced landing in the city of Atherton, California. The forced landing was precipitated by a complete loss of engine power while descending toward the San Carlos airport. The aircraft was owned and operated by the pilot. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time and no flight plan was filed. The aircraft incurred substantial damage. The certificated private pilot, the sole occupant, sustained serious injuries. The flight originated at San Carlos, California, on the day of the accident and flew to Fresno, California, for an en route stop. The pilot departed Fresno at 2030 for the return flight to San Carlos.

In a verbal statement to investigating sheriff's deputies from San Mateo County, the pilot reported that prior to departure from San Carlos he did a preflight inspection which included a visual inspection of the fuel quantity in the tanks. Before departing Fresno for the return flight, the pilot did not inspect the fuel tanks and did not refuel the aircraft. The pilot noted that he was descending toward the San Carlos airport when the engine sputtered and died in what he described as "classic symptoms of fuel exhaustion." The pilot maneuvered the aircraft to attempt a landing in a flat area next to some buildings, but he did not have sufficient altitude to reach the area. The pilot then selected a city street on which to attempt a landing and collided with power lines and trees.

The investigating sheriff's deputy reported that he is a pilot and one of the designated San Mateo County aircraft accident and/or incident investigators for the department. He stated that the aircraft fuel system was intact; however, both fuel tanks were empty. After recovery from the site, complete fuel system integrity was established and approximately 1 gallon of fuel was drained from the system.

The pilot did not complete a Pilot/Operator Aircraft Accident Report, NTSB Form 6120.1/2, as requested.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 12, 2013 at 7:16 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

in 20 years one airplane crash in Atherton vs how many automobile crashes? How many deaths from each?


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 12, 2013 at 8:22 am

resident:

You continue to want to make this a safety issue. The FAA has had this approach into San Carlos and or similar for many years. It didn't become an issue for you until Surfair started flying it. Why? If it's really about safety then you should have been complaining about the use of this approach by other aircraft years ago. But not until Surfair begins using it and disturbing you do you complain. Would you put your family in any light aircraft? If not, I can understand your reluctance to put them in the Pilatus even though it's not really "light." If you would put them in other light aircraft but not the PC12 I would question your judgment as the safety/accident rates of this aircraft are very low.

You say these planes are being operated by Surfair in "an unsafe manner." Upon what do you base that opinion? Surfair voluntarily operates to Part 121 regulations regarding pilot experience and training, number of pilots and maintenance. That being the case how is that "unsafe?" And if it is unsafe then the airlines are also "unsafe" as they are following the same operational rules as Surfair. Please note, and this has been repeatedly pointed out, the PC12 is certified by the FAA for single pilot operation. Surfair operates these planes with two. "Unsafe?"

You keep beating the 29 accidents and 74 fatalities drum. How many of those were due to mechanical failure. I know from reading the NTSB reports that of the 15 that occurred in the US, two were due to mechanical failure. That's a very impressive safety history. Here's a link to an article by an expert regarding the safety of the Pilatus: Web Link

From the PC12 operating manual we find that the best glide speed with prop feathered is 116 knots. The final approach speed is 86 knots. That's only about 20 knots faster than a Piper Warrior. The final approach speed without flaps is 121 knots. This is likely close to the speed Surfair is going on it's approach as Peter has noted they are making part of the approach without flaps and without gear extended. Web Link

I haven't been able to find the glide angle for the PC12, but I'm guessing it's relatively flat given it's low stall speed wing design. As I've said before, planes don't just fall out of the sky when an engine fails. They glide and can maneuver. Very close to the ground when one loses an engine in a single, one doesn't go through a restart check list until they've gone through the loss of engine checklist. First among the items on that checklist is to configure for best glide speed then look for an appropriate place to land. Engine restart is down the list and only gone to if there is time.

You seem to think that a multiengine aircraft is inherently safer than a single. That is not necessarily the case. Just ask Sully Sullenberger about the value of two engines when you lose both. Through fantastic judgment and piloting skills he put his plane down in the Hudson.

I have to question your aviation experience. The things you bring up are not consistent with someone with significant experience. In fact, I suspect you may have had a bad experience and that is coloring your judgment. Are you a licensed pilot?


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 12, 2013 at 8:28 am

get real:

piston driven aircraft. pilot error. Unfortunately, probably the most common pilot error there is in general aviation. As Peter points out how many car crashes and deaths from same?


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 12, 2013 at 8:38 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

an unappreciated statistical fact is that a twin engine plane has twice the chance of an engine failure than does a single engine plane.

Flying a twin engine plane with only on issue is very challenging, particularly at low altitudes and when taking off'

When a single engine plane loses it engine it becomes an easily controllable glider.

Here is what AirFactsJournal states:
"Flying a multiengine airplane is much higher workload than a comparable single. When everything is working properly, you have two of almost everything to manage and monitor. More importantly, if one engine begins to act up, it may take significant pilot skill to keep things going satisfactorily.

In a single-engine airplane, if the engine quits, the airplane will tend to remain wings level and yaw straight. As long as the pilot does not resist the airplane's natural nose-down tendency following a power loss, a single will tend to keep flying straight ahead unless the pilot commands otherwise.

Conversely, if an engine quits in a twin, the aircraft will immediately and dramatically begin to diverge from controlled flight in all three axes. It takes prompt, correct and in some situations aggressive pilot action to prevent the airplane from going out of control. The slower the airplane is at the time of failure, the more aggressive the pilot must be. Under some circumstances it will become completely uncontrollable well before the wing stalls, because of insufficient airflow over the control surfaces to counter asymmetric thrust."


Posted by Diane, a resident of another community
on Dec 12, 2013 at 12:33 pm

Resident,

I agree that safety is a major issue in this debate and that the FAA made a huge mistake in approving that approach path for Surf Air. Until the community meeting I didn't realize how many schools are directly under that flight path. Is it possible that the FAA considered this insignificant?!

In my opinion the noise annoyance is just as big of a concern as it relates to the health and well-being of the community. According to WHO, impairment of early childhood development and education caused by noise may have lifelong effects on academic achievement and health. Studies and statistics on the effects of chronic exposure to aircraft noise on children have found:

consistent evidence that noise exposure harms cognitive performance;

consistent association with impaired well-being and motivation to a slightly more limited extent;

moderate evidence of effects on blood pressure and catecholamine hormone secretion.

Two very recent studies published in the British Medical Journal have found a significant association between aircraft noise exposure and increased risk of hospital admission for cardiovascular disease and stroke.

Web Link

Web Link





Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 12, 2013 at 12:41 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"the FAA made a huge mistake in approving that approach path for Surf Air. "

The FAA did not approve this approach path for any specific individual or organization. This published instrument approach (RNAV (GPS) Y RWY 30 SAN CARLOS (SQL) has been in the book for years - without a single problem. Every plane flying into KSQL in low visibility conditions MUST use this approach.


Posted by Diane, a resident of another community
on Dec 12, 2013 at 12:56 pm

Peter,

That approach path may have worked well in the past, but now that the San Carlos Airport is approving commercial carriers to operate out of that airport, with regularly scheduled flights that will be ever increasing, that is no longer viable...at least, NOT for the residents who are impacted.

I did not say the flight path was not being used before Surf Air. I said the FAA should not have approved that flight path for Surf Air. There is a difference.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 12, 2013 at 1:10 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"I said the FAA should not have approved that flight path for Surf Air. There is a difference."

No there is not a difference. When an IFR approach has been test flown, certified and then published by the FAA then that approach can, and in IFR conditions MUST, be used by any aircraft.

The fact that SurfAir operates with ATP qualified pilots makes SurfAir on one of the safest planes that uses this approach.

"now that the San Carlos Airport is approving commercial carriers to operate out of that airport," San Carlos had no choice in the matter. PLEASE read the above postings about the airport's contract with the FAA which requires them to operate on a non-discriminatory manner.


Posted by Diane, a resident of another community
on Dec 12, 2013 at 1:36 pm

Peter,

I am not going to engage with you anymore on this topic because I find you insufferable.

I will just state once more, that it is MHO that the FAA should have (at the time of Surf Air's approval process), and should now devise a more suitable approach path for Surf Air and any future commercial air carriers who might come to San Carlos Airport.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 12, 2013 at 1:45 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

The FAA has already made it clear that the MOST they could change this approach is 10 degrees East - which would simply put the approach over other people's homes.

" I find you insufferable." That is your right but my preference is to stick with the facts and not to engage in self serving arguments. The opponents of SurfAir's use of San Carlos just ignore the facts of the approach's demonstrated safety, SurfAir higher than required operating standards and the obligation of the airport to permit SurfAir's operations.

As previously stated I, who lives near the flight path in question, would be ashamed if the solution to 'my' problem was to give the noise to less vocal and less affluent residents.


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 12, 2013 at 9:20 pm


I must comment on all of this talk lately on who's paying who. I, for one, can categorically state that I am not being paid by anyone and haven't been paid by anyone for anything for a long, long time. I don't even get accused anymore either. : 0)

I just want to say I read and enjoyed the web links that Jetman posted on the FAA and on the concept of "capture", and ont the link Diane posted on research studies done in reference to the effects of airport noise and health. There are all kinds of "safety" issues, including this one: a quote from Diane's link:

"Two very recent studies published in the British Medical Journal have found a significant association between aircraft noise exposure and increased risk of hospital admission for cardiovascular disease and stroke."

Having just started having to take blood pressure medication, I can relate.

When Peter states that he would try to avoid dumping this noise on less vocal people and possibly those in lower socio-economic neighborhoods, I couldn't agree more. It's not fair.

But then I started thinking about it and I have to wonder: why is it a question of who is going to have to suffer more...or less? My question is: why should anyone, or any neighborhood, have to be encumbered by this daily barrage of unwanted noise?

Just some thoughts. Monday and Tuesday was pretty quiet around here, comparitably speaking. Today? Small aircraft flew over this house all day long, starting at 7:30 a.m.

Here are some sound files. I only uploaded a few. These were recorded BEFORE Surf Air was flying here. The day I recorded this, planes flew practically every 15 minutes...for a total of roughly 17 or so planes. It was already bad then. Or, maybe I am being too sensitive. I don't know. I'm sure that some of you have had the same experience.

Web Link


Posted by Resident, a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Dec 12, 2013 at 9:54 pm

Menlo Voter,
I could bore you with lots of personel stories from 30 years ago like flying next to the new Dome at the top of Mt. St. Helens after the eruption. I flew my wife to be up to Tahoe with some friends in a Cessna 206. I flew out of Reno in a 172 circling to get high enough to go over the pass when the density altitude wouldn't allow us to climb anymore and having to make a decision with 500 ft. to spare, go or don't go, Take a chance I won't run into a down draft that sucks away my 500 ft cushion. We chose not to go and left in a cooler temperature the next day. I have no problem with my family in a small general aviation plane. I have no problem with general aviation. I think anyone who can afford it, has a desire to get their license and go have fun. Should do it. There's nothing like it. I have no problem with being in an area with lots of Commercial Air traffic. I knew that when I moved here. I have no problem with Surf Air. The jury is still out on wether or not they can survive in one of the most competetive industries on the earth. That's not my business. I wish them well.

My concern is with Safety. Having lost an engine in flight as PIC I know the sinking feeling one gets when you go from a rumble to silence. Training and instincts kick in. I'm quite sure Surf pilots have both. But lets at least both agree it can and does happen.
At 1,000-1500 ft. AGL in a densely populated flight path the risk grows exponentially. I never said I was an aviation expert. Perhaps you are and can shed more light on my and others concerns. But you don't have the luxury of dismissing them.
Surf flies a large plane PC-12 at a very fast speed at a very low AGL altitude. Sometimes in bad weather sometimes at night. Sometimes mechanical problems develop. As was stated at the Atherton meeting by their director of operations when asked why surf landed a plane at 2:30 in the morning. He said they landed late because they took off late because yes the plane had mechanical problems. These are brand new planes, w/ very complicated engines, hardware and software.

I know planes don't fall out of the sky unless the pilot makes a mistake and causes it to stall. At those altitudes not much time to recover from a stall. Unlikely I know, but a lot can happen if you leave yourself little time to recover. To set the record straight a plane falling out of the sky as you keep saying would do less damage than the current configuration of the Surf approach in the event of error or failure. I agree.

All I'm asking is to review other options than the current flight path in the current configuration, The bay approach at a higher approach altitude is the safest. Maybe a little lower speed. It may take them a few minutes longer. Maybe burn a few more gallons of gas. How about entering the pattern like other planes. Not too much to ask for a little more cushion for safety. I've been told they're exploring that with the FAA. Maybe they could deviate in between the 10 degrees they're talking about and spread the noise and safer approach. My guess is they will wait out the people complaining until everyone just says ok and moves on and hopes for no mechanical failures or pilot errors. I hope I'm wrong, It's up to our local politicians to keep the pressure on Surf and the FAA to do the right thing.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 12, 2013 at 9:55 pm

Julie:

I don't think it's a matter of who "has" to put up with airport noise. If people don't want to put up with it they can move. The airports have been there for a very long time and they aren't going anywhere. These airports have not operated in secret. In fact, I'd hazard a guess that people buying in those locations purchased those homes for less than they would have, had they not been under the approach and departure ends of an airport. As long as these airports are going to continue to operate, aircraft will continue to overfly the approach and departure real estate that exists under those places. Not to mention others under the pattern.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 13, 2013 at 6:42 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

IF your interested in facts about the safety of the Pilatus PC 12 here they are:
Web Link

Excerpts:
"The PC-12 is a single engine aircraft powered by a Pratt & Whitney, PT-6, the most dependable aircraft engine ever produced, anywhere."

"This aircraft is, literally, a glider. At maximum gross weight, it glides an incredible 2.6 nautical miles per 1000 feet of altitude, and does it at a very slow 114 KTS. "

"All of this simply means that in the event of an engine-out landing the touchdown speed in a PC-12 is far slower than any aircraft in the world with which it can be reasonably compared. This, in combination with its incredible demonstrated crashworthiness, as attested by the FAA, the incredible safety record of the PT-6 engine, and no twin engine vices or weaknesses, yields the safest general aviation aircraft in the world."


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 13, 2013 at 7:20 am

Given the glide ratio of this aircraft, were it to lose an engine at CUZUP, they would be able to glide 5.2 nautical miles. The minimum crossing altitude on that approach at CUZUP is 2000 feet. That would place them over the marshland off the "south" end of the runway. So, I don't think anyone needs to worry about a Pilatus that loses an engine crashing into people or structures on the ground.

The MDA (minimum decent altitude) on the approach is 1260 feet. So, even if the PC12 lost it's engine at MDA, it would likely be able to make the runway.

I'm sorry, I don't see how anyone can seriously claim that these aircraft are "unsafe" or that they are being operated in an "unsafe manner."

These particular aircraft may be new, but this model has been around since at least the mid 90's. The fact that these particular aircraft are new is a good thing. Just like cars, aircraft can develop problems as they age and the mileage/hours pile up. In the case of aircraft there are regulations which require those issues to be addressed, unlike cars. In this particular case, Surfair is maintaining their aircraft to airline standards even though they are not required. Again, hardly "unsafe."


Posted by Diane, a resident of another community
on Dec 13, 2013 at 10:41 am

I'm sorry, I don't see how anyone can seriously claim that these aircraft are "unsafe" or that they are being operated in an "unsafe manner."

Well, I just can't understand how anyone can seriously believe that having commercial air carriers flying directly over several schools is a safe and wise decision. Or, how anyone can think it is so safe and wise, that it is okay to increase the number of scheduled flights over these schools, thus increasing the chance of something tragic happening.

I don't understand how anyone can be so dismissive about the noise when so many studies have been conducted (some even funded by the FAA, btw) that conclusively show the negative health effects aircraft noise has on people who are subjected to it.

I guess I will just have to accept that there is a lot of things I don't understand. I DON'T ACCEPT, however, that the are things that can't be changed.


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 13, 2013 at 12:05 pm

Menlo Voter:

Re:
" If people don't want to put up with it they can move"

Or, conversely,...If people don't want to move, they can put up with it ?

It just may be that people neither want to move nor do they want to put up with.

It just may be...that people cannot move...nor can they put up with it.

We are so accustomed to dualistic thinking: either...or.

This may be similar to not feeling well yet not wanting to go to the doctor. We wait it out. We hope that tomorrow we will feel better. We don't want to admit that we are feeling THAT bad. Because once we make that doctor appointment we can no longer deny that we have a problem that only a doctor can fix---and maybe not even a doctor can fix.

But we don't want to have to take the antibiotics, we don't want to have to suffer through the X-rays and scans, we fear the surgery and all of this will be costly too.

In spite of all of the good reasons not to make that doctor appointment, we do it anyway. Why? Because we have had enough discomfort and pain.

The doctor in this case is the attorney.

We are waiting to see if we will "feel better" (or worse) tomorrow.


Posted by Diane, a resident of another community
on Dec 13, 2013 at 12:49 pm

Julie,

Maybe in this case we are already seeing the doctor (our elected officials) and are holding off on seeing the specialist (attorney). :)


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 13, 2013 at 1:11 pm

Diane:

The point you keep missing is that there hundreds if not thousands of commercial flights passing over schools, hospitals and any other manner of building you want to choose. The number of those overflights has increased in the past and will likely increase in the future.

The safety issue regarding Surfair is a red herring that people are throwing out because it's really about noise.


Posted by Diane, a resident of another community
on Dec 13, 2013 at 1:17 pm

Menlo Voter,

The thing you fail to realize is that Surf Air was not always flying over OUR homes and OUR schools and that this is PRECISELY about SAFETY AND NOISE.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 13, 2013 at 1:18 pm

Julie:

Often we have to learn to live with things. This is one of them. I wish the train didn't go by so many times a day but it does. I knew the tracks were there when I bought my house. Should my neighbors and I sue CaltrIn because we don't want to be exposed to the noise anymore? That makes as much sense as trying to sue to stop aircraft flying over your neighborhood. It's a nonstarter.

My prediction is that people are going to waste a bunch of time, angst and money just like the Redwood Shores residents with the same outcome.


Posted by get real Councils, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 13, 2013 at 2:24 pm

Julie and Diane,
I do admire your determination and you are on the right track.Lots of people apparently really interested in this Surf Air problem and this thread has over 10,300 hits which is large as I have ever seen for any subject.
If you are interested in some case law and circumstances regarding airport noise here is a good site with many summaries. Again this area of law is a playground for attorneys as it is complex and beyond the scope of just some anecdotal stories. I do believe this will have to end in the hands of Atherton, Menlo Park, Palo Alto and Redwood city area in order to get legal advise for remedies. Public outcry will demand a solution as the noise is clearly someting the community cannot tolerate.

Web Link


Posted by Diane, a resident of another community
on Dec 13, 2013 at 2:36 pm

get real Councils,

Thank you for that great link!


Posted by neighborhood, a resident of another community
on Dec 13, 2013 at 2:52 pm

Actually I'd be willing to bet that a significant proportion of those 10,300 hits to this crazy thread are just amused neighbors checking out the chutzpah in the Julie and Diane show. Even Peter Carpenter's patience is becoming strained.


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 13, 2013 at 2:53 pm

Menlo Voter:

I know that on one level you are very right. I mean, I know that those things you point out are true.

You compare this situation to what happened in Redwood Shores. Even though my heart was never in it, a long time ago I was in Real Estate. My Broker's first advice to me was: remember, no two transactions are ever the same. So there might be some pertinent differences in the Redwood Shores example and this one.

You predict that people will waste alot of time and energy. Not if they prevail. It is not beyond possibility. But I truly hope that everyone can find a less traumatic way to reach solutions.

As far as angst, we have experienced enough of that
already.

I know there are conditions everywhere with which we need to try to cope. I'll go along with you on that. Whether or not this is one of those...is the question.

What I find very difficult to understand---sort of on a democratic and a philosophical level is this: if an entity chooses to enter an arena and their entry causes considerable upset, some people are saying that they have no accountability? Worse yet, the federal agency who is supposed to act as a watchdog, rather than at least EXAMINING the issues---even--inactivates whatever oversight powers the San Carlos Airport might have. And what about the City of San Carlos?? So what it boils down to is we might as well be a Federal Province---since neither the local governments nor the citizens have any say in this---even though they are being impacted by it.
We have no, or little, recourse. That is not democracy. That is "plantation" mentality.

I'm sorry, but I feel that there is more than just noise at issue here.

I got involved because of noise. But I can see now that it is more intricate---shedding light on things that perhaps we should notice.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 13, 2013 at 3:00 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Get real - good reference, thanks.

Anyone who reads this link will know that receiving damages is the exception and most decisions have been in favor of federal preemption .

Also note that almost all of the cases were against the airport, not the operators of the planes. Suing San Mateo would be expensive on both sides. And the best outcome would not change the noise, just pay 'damages'.

The only realistic solution is to work with SurfAir and to realize that there will still be a problem.


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 13, 2013 at 3:01 pm

Get real Councils:

Thanks.


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 13, 2013 at 3:09 pm

neighborhood:

chutzpah?

You've got plenty of that yourself.

And, btw: how do YOU know what Peter Carpenter is thinking or feeling?

I can see that you haven't lost a minute of sleep worrying about what solutions can be found.


Posted by SteveC, a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Dec 13, 2013 at 3:48 pm

SteveC is a registered user.

Editor: My this R.I.P.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 13, 2013 at 4:36 pm

Diane:

the thing you fail to realize is that, YES there were hundreds of other commercial and general aviation flights flying over your homes. You weren't complaining about safety then were you? Nope. This is about NOISE. The PC12 is not unsafe and Surfair is not operating in an unsafe manner. Safety is a red herring in this discussion.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 13, 2013 at 4:44 pm

Julie:

I can tell you the Redwood Shores was different. They were complaing about aircraft taking off. This is a far noisier phase of flight than landing. They got nowhere.


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 13, 2013 at 4:55 pm

Peter Carpenter:

You said: "The only realistic solution is to work with SurfAir and to realize that there will still be a problem."

I think that you very well may be right. That is a realistic assessment.

Do you really believe that anyone is interested in damages? Maybe only insofar as helping to cover attorney fees.

"Specific Performance" would be a better outcome.


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 13, 2013 at 5:02 pm

Menlo Voter:

I understand.

I have no details re: Redwood Shores. It was just a thought.


Posted by matt, a resident of Atherton: West Atherton
on Dec 13, 2013 at 5:51 pm

Julie:

You keep writing these posts insinuating that SurfAir somehow "invaded" our community and hasn't been "accountable". You even accuse them of having what you call a "plantation mentality"... as if you or any of us living here in Atherton -- one of the safest, wealthiest communities in America -- would have any concept of slavery or poverty or true disadvantage.

SurfAir has done nothing of the sort. It's a carefully planned, openly operated air service -- flying alongside dozens and dozens of other aircraft and servicing your neighbors in your community. They've abided by all the rules -- rules that they didn't set and were in place long before Wade and the team even imagined the business. They've gone out of their way to accommodate haters like you, by attending community meetings when they didn't have to, and working with local community leaders and residents to alleviate the noise.

But that's still not enough. All you'll ever accept is a complete shutdown, which is just not realistic and not fair to the other residents here who actually use the service and thrive because of it.

You can complain about the noise all you want, but you lose any credibility by accusing the airline of not caring.


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 13, 2013 at 7:56 pm

Matt:

Why are you singling me out?

All of these groups, citizens' groups, were already formed before I even knew anything about it! I saw it in the San Mateo Times about people in Atherton being upset and that it was on the Agenda at the Atherton Council meeting. That was my first contact and my first knowledge.

I have stated that I have been bothered by the noise...even before Surf Air arrived. I am not objecting solely to Surf Air plane noise---I don't care whose plane wakes me up at 2:30 a.m.

You've got to know that I am not the only person upset by Surf Air...and the fear people have that it will create even more noise in the already noisy local sky.

The community meeting had 75 attendees. I was not the only one in attendance that has concerns.

Freedom of speech is a 1st Amendment freedom. I think we still live in a country where people are free to express themselves.

I'm sorry if you don't like or don't agree with my statements.

I am only one solitary person: what people used to call "a majority if one". There are people and City Govenments who are far more vocal than me who are not at ease with this situation.



Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 13, 2013 at 8:14 pm

Matt:

Just one more thing. A clarification. Maybe I did not express it clearly: Re: plantation mentality I meant this:

The slaves living on the plantations had no say-so about their living conditions. They should be grateful, no matter the conditions. They had "no voice".

We have no voice about the noise. Even when we complain, people either ignore our concerns or try to quiet them or try to tell us our complaints are unfounded.

That's what I meant.


Posted by caregiver, a resident of Menlo Park: Fair Oaks
on Dec 13, 2013 at 8:46 pm

After the meeting, resident wrote "Surf is going to work on moving their approach over 101. I have talked to other pilots who think Surf could come up the bay then cut over to San Carlos to eliminate the problem - they would be lower than the SFO traffic"

Peter, Jetman, anyone who understands nextgen...are 101 or the Bay legal approaches? Would such an approach require new regulations? Would Surf find it practical?


Posted by Jetman, a resident of another community
on Dec 13, 2013 at 9:34 pm

Menlo Voter:

You don't seem to understand that you are on the wrong side of history. People who don't like noise are not moving away from the airport. Quite the opposite, more and more of them are moving into the area everyday, and with each one of them, opposition to the noise grows.

It is not homeowners who are hanging on to a bygone pastoral era... it is you.

There has not been a new airport built near an urban area in well over 50 years. Small airports are in decline all over the country. Like hot-rodders, and Harley riders, the population of GA pilots is a declining, and aging population hanging on to a dream from the 1950's that has become an anachronism in an age of high fuel costs, increasing urban congestion, and declining disposable income.

I would hate for this to happen, but Surf Air's noisy planes are waking a sleeping giant that would love to devour SQL and excrete a high-density mixed-use retail/residential condo development in its place.

Once "NextGen" clears the airspace for government and commercial drone operations, how much you want to bet the FAA turns around, and throws the GA pilots under the bus?

Can general aviation reverse its decline?
Aviation International News ~ March 1, 2011
"From house-locked Santa Monica Airport in southern California to Naples, Fla., local communities are attempting to enact their own noise restrictions. Naples locals have been trying for years to ban Stage 2 jets, and Santa Monica-area residents and the city itself (which owns the airport) have wanted to prevent Category C and D jets (approach speeds of 121 knots or more) from using the airport. Airports that take federal funds can't erect such limits, but this doesn't stop the local communities from trying. Web Link


Posted by Diane, a resident of another community
on Dec 13, 2013 at 9:36 pm

<<the thing you fail to realize is that, YES there were hundreds of other commercial and general aviation flights flying over your homes. You weren't complaining about safety then were you? Nope. This is about NOISE. The PC12 is not unsafe and Surfair is not operating in an unsafe manner. Safety is a red herring in this discussion.>>

The point you seem to be missing is that this discussion is about Surf Air and not about other operators out of San Carlos Airport. Some of the many people who have voiced their concerns are troubled by the noise that Surf Air is generating in their ever increasing flights over our neighborhoods. Others are concerned about Surf Air's operations from a safety standpoint. Some have voiced concern about reduction in property values.

I believe the problem with Surf Air's operation is safety and noise. I gather from your posts, that you believe that no problems exist at all.

I think we will have to agree to disagree on this, Menlo Voter, unless you truly believe you can bully and badger me into silence. In that case, you would be mistaken.


Posted by Jetman, a resident of another community
on Dec 13, 2013 at 10:50 pm

Caregiver:

Anything can be done if you have enough political power. All commercial aircraft departing from, or arriving at SFO, fly up the bay and out the Golden Gate, or fly at 10,000' over the western most portion of the San Francisco/Daly City border. Commercial air traffic over San Francisco is virtually nonexistent. Flying circuitous routes to avoid San Francisco, costs the airlines time and fuel, but the City and County of San Francisco owns and operates SFO, so the FAA and the Airlines cooperate with the political powers in San Francisco.






Posted by Redident, a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Dec 14, 2013 at 1:12 am

Jetman,

You are absolutely right. San Francisco City and County own SFO. All flights in and out avoid the city like the plague.
Powerful people in high places answering to a wealthy mandate.
You may have noticed we haven't heard much from reps from the San Mateo County who owns and controls SQL. A guy showed up from one of the sup's offices at the meeting. Said hello at the podium and walked away never to be seen again.

We have a situation here of money, power, and influence on both sides. You can go to the list of investors for Surf on the web. It's a lot of the big hitters. I suspect Menlo Voter is involved with Surf in one form or another, Employee, investor, directly or indirectly, Knows people in the company, Some connection. Sup's our side don't represent their constituents. At least nowhere I can find them. Where are you Mr. Supervisor?

Mr. Cole from Surf Air said no more than 2 flights a day over any house. Can we hold you to that Mr. Cole. Would Surf agree to that in a memorandum to the Airport. I have it on good authority that Surf has plans already in place to have 20 flights into SQL per day.
If you thought 6 were noisy or unsafe. Triple that.

Any experts out there with a legal opinion other than Menlo voter re; liability once noticed,
In my uneducated sole humble opinion the only way to get Surf to really sit down at the table and make some concrete commitments is with lawyers and threats of suit and issuing constructive and actual notice of their operations causing an unsafe condition. If an event ever happens where someone is injured or killed as a result of anything they were considered to have actual or constructive notice of. They will be held
liable.
This may sway some of their investors to reconsider and their insurance carrier to not insure or rewrite the policy. Not my goal to disrupt Surf's operations but to get them to agree to do the right thing, sit down and negotiate in good faith backed up in writing with SQL's blessing.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 14, 2013 at 1:54 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

".are 101 or the Bay legal approaches?" In VFR conditions - Yes
In IFR conditions - No

"Would such an approach require new regulations?" Not for VFR operations but commercial planes always use instrument approaches because they are safer. Think of VFR as going off-road and IFR as following the highways.

"Would Surf find it practical?" Probably not because they would have to slip between San Jose airspace and Moffat airspace and then would conflict, both on 101 and the bay side, with Palo Alto airport traffic. These maneuvers would be more complicated and have a greater risk on conflict with other traffic than does the IFR approach.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 14, 2013 at 2:07 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

And north of Woodside Road they would have to be below 1500 ft if going up 101 or the bay.

Here is the bay area's very complicated and, for VFR flight, restrictive airspace:

Web Link


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 14, 2013 at 2:43 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

And here are the San Carlos Airport Noise Abatement Procedures:

Web Link

Note that the IFR procedure complies with these procedures.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 14, 2013 at 8:33 am

Diane:

please provide some factual information that Surfair flights are "unsafe." I hear a lot of opinion from the anti-surfair crowd about safety. Peter and I have both posted factual information regarding the safety of both the aircraft and its operation. You all just keep ignoring it and going on about how unsafe it is. Please provide some facts to back up your statements. Otherwise it's just the opinions of a person that is not cognizant of the facts or is simply choosing to ignore them. You're entitled to your opinion, but without some factual basis it is simply an opinion. This is about noise.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 14, 2013 at 8:38 am

Jetman:

I've been around long enough to see this happen at the GA airports around the bay area on and off for years. You may be right that eventually the GA airports will go away, but it will be a long time due to these airports having accepted federal funds and agreeing to not close the airports and not restrict traffic to those airports. It will probably be 20 years before that happens in San Carlos and that's only if the airport accepts no further federal funds.

Yes, GA participation is declining. That has much more to do with the economy than anything else in my opinion. I suspect that as the economy improves so will GA. We'll have to wait and see.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 14, 2013 at 8:45 am

resident:

as I have previously said, I have zero financial interest in Surfair. My interest is in facts which those not liking Surfair are in short supply of or which they simply wish to ignore. The PC12 is one of the safest aircraft in the world and Surfair is operating them in an extremely safe manner. Those are facts. If you have some facts to provide that indicates that is not true, please do so.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 14, 2013 at 9:12 am

to those who think air traffic avoids San Francisco "like the plague'" I suggest you go to this site and click on the live flight tracker where you can watch flights over the bay area in real time. You'll see there are flights over San Francisco all the time. This isn't some kind of sinister conspiracy. Seriously folks, get a grip.

Web Link


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 14, 2013 at 9:13 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Julie - I understand and respect the fact that you and others object to the noise created by airplanes - sensitivity to noise is a personal and subjective manner.
I don't understand the concerns about safety because, as posted above, the aircraft being used is the safest general aviation aircraft in the world and lots of airplanes have been flying this IFR approach for years without a problem. Safety is not subjective but based on data - except where no data exists as for the risks of a proposed design for a new and different nuclear reactor.

My objective remains to try to help the community reach a reasonable solution - which requires understanding the legal and regulatory facts.


Posted by Enough, a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Dec 14, 2013 at 10:45 am

Menlo Voter, Matt, and Peter Carpenter:
Here is a fact for you: The newly arrived noise created by SurfAir flights is bugging the crap out of numerous citizens under the SurfAir flight path.
Oh, and with amazing irony, my house just got buzzed by a SurfAir plane AS I WAS TYPING THIS! 10:44am December 14, 2013.


Posted by Diane, a resident of another community
on Dec 14, 2013 at 10:55 am

Menlo Voter,

It is not my obligation to prove to you that Surf Air's operations are unsafe. Nor is it your obligation to prove to me it is safe. This is a good thing, because obviously, neither of us has convinced the other.

I have stated why I believe it is unsafe very clearly. If you are having trouble comprehending that, I guess that's just unfortunate. I do not feel I must repeat myself ad nauseam, simply because you command it.

Here's my command to you: if you set the rules here, prove it. Otherwise, quit bullying and badgering the people who don't agree with your point of view.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 14, 2013 at 11:04 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"my house just got buzzed by a SurfAir plane " The plane was on the IFR approach and could not have been lower than 1300 ft over Menlo Park - hardly 'buzzing'.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 14, 2013 at 11:13 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

" prove it"

1 - - the IFR approach into San Carlos has been used by tens of thousands of flights over the last decade. IFR approaches are, by their design and restrictions, always safer than any other approach which is why commercial airlines always use them ( at least until they have visual contact with the 'runway environment'.

2 - and the Pilatus PC 12 is the SAFEST of all those aircraftWeb Link

No bullying or badgering - just the facts.

And your counter argument is?

Diane - welcome back this "thoughtful gathering place for sharing community information and opinion."


Posted by resident, a resident of another community
on Dec 14, 2013 at 11:14 am

There is a good solution to this issue. There is a airport on the other side of the bay - Hayward Airport. Check out it's site and history - this is an upgrade to the San Carlos Airport. This is a great airport. Is has better runways and services.

1. If you have flown Southwest San Jose / Burbank you are aware that the flight path is on the east side of the state - over desolate territory. Surf could fly up the state on the east side - between I-5 and 99 - enter the bay area on the east side - then cross over the bay to the San Carlos Airport. At this point they would be under the SFO incoming.
2. There is already a FAA approved path on the east side of the state / bay that flies over relatively unpopulated area.
3. Since fuel costs are not cheap they should be looking for the best solution that uses the least fuel - as Southwest has already figured out. If you fly Southwest you will se a lot of small planes in that same route but lower.
4. Surf should be looking at the bottom line to run their business - if they are wasting money on law suits they will not survive. If people are rattling the FAA's management they will not survive.
5. The safety issue is that the air traffic between the San Jose Airport and SFO is non-stop - at one point working in a west to east pattern / east to west for trans-pacific. SFO traffic has to be in the north line-up by the 13 mile marker. A lot of juggling to get in the order. Add to that the national guard traffic at Moffatt on a recurring basis. If Surf is engaging the system in a cross traffic 10 times a day then the law of averages says that the pilots will not be at prime 100% of the time. Bad judgment will occur. They are already in the "bad management" mode when they talk about not flying over the same house more than twice a day. They are not helicopters. Talk about helicopters - that was going on all morning. Heavily populated areas have a lot of moving parts. Less moving parts translates to higher degree of safety.


Posted by get real Councils, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 14, 2013 at 11:20 am

Enough states "Oh, and with amazing irony, my house just got buzzed by a SurfAir plane AS I WAS TYPING THIS! 10:44am December 14, 2013."

Yep, I was just coming into my house to type this and I heard the same flight. Very noisy and I have lousy hearing to boot. It is Saturday morning and very little ambient noise here in Lindenwood so maybe louder than a weekday flyover. And yes, it annoys the hell out of me also and I am probably a mile from the flight path.

For those who are tired of all the reasons why you can't do anything I would suggest you write your District US Representative, Anna Eshoo and voice your displeasure with the noise caused by Surf Air. You can call her local office or
she may be contacted by email at:
Web Link

It is my belief that Rep Eshoo now resides very near the Roger Reynolds Nursery site and if correct is smack on the IFR center line approach. She is likely in Washington most of the time but if she does come home in the next couple of weeks when Congress is in recess she too can enjoy the Surf Air noise for herself.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 14, 2013 at 11:26 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"The safety issue is that the air traffic between the San Jose Airport and SFO is non-stop - at one point working in a west to east pattern / east to west for trans-pacific. SFO traffic has to be in the north line-up by the 13 mile marker. A lot of juggling to get in the order. Add to that the national guard traffic at Moffatt on a recurring basis. "

Look at the bay area sectional chart and you will see how this problem is avoided by the Class B and Class C airspace.
Web Link

"If Surf is engaging the system in a cross traffic 10 times a day then the law of averages says that the pilots will not be at prime 100% of the time"

SurfAir is flying IFR and as such is in positive control by BAY APPROACH at all times thereby ensuring separation from other aircraft - that is one of the basic principles of IFR flights.


Posted by Diane, a resident of another community
on Dec 14, 2013 at 11:37 am

Peter,

If your post was directed at me, I was actually requesting prove that Menlo Voter in in charge of this forum, controls the agenda, and can dictate what others can and cannot say and what others can and cannot think about this issue.

I have already read the links helpfully provided about the Pilatus from prior posts.


I am glad that we can agree on this
:
"thoughtful gathering place for sharing community information and opinion."


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 14, 2013 at 11:41 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"I have already read the links helpfully provided about the Pilatus from prior posts."

- And your counter argument is?


Posted by Diane, a resident of another community
on Dec 14, 2013 at 11:47 am

Peter,

As I have already stated, I will not repeat myself ad nauseum. Please refer to my prior posts to refresh your memory on why I believe Surf Air's operation is unsafe.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 14, 2013 at 11:51 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Diane - your OPINION is that "Surf Air's operation is unsafe."

What FACTS do you have to support that opinion?

Driving down 101 at 65 MPH next to an 18 wheeler is much closer to being unsafe than being 1300 ft below the path of an airplane - unless you have facts that demonstrate that that airplane has a specific probability of suddenly falling from the sky.


Posted by Diane, a resident of another community
on Dec 14, 2013 at 11:56 am

Peter,

Please look up the definition of badgering and then tell me again (with a straight face)that you are not participating in that behavior.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 14, 2013 at 12:01 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Diane - I am just asking you for the facts on which you base your opinion. If you don't have any facts and it just your opinion then thats fine - just so we know.

"Badger \Badg"er\, v. t. [imp. & p. p. Badgered (?);p. pr. &
vb. n. Badgering.] [For sense 1, see 2d Badger; for 2,
see 1st Badger.]
1. To tease or annoy, as a badger when baited; to worry or
irritate persistently.

2. To beat down; to cheapen; to barter; to bargain."



Posted by Diane, a resident of another community
on Dec 14, 2013 at 12:14 pm

Peter,

As I have already stated, refer to my prior post to refresh your memory on why I believe it is unsafe. Your efforts to squash opposition Surf Air's operations under the guise of advanced knowledge of all thing air related are not appreciated by me, nor do I find them constructive.

Some of us would like to find a solution that satisfies ALL parties, including Surf Air.

The people with concerns about this are not Surf Air's enemies. Please quit treating us as such.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 14, 2013 at 12:21 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Diane - Just gives us the facts or recognize that you are offering an opinion, which is quite appropriate, and not facts.

Asking someone to answer a question that they have refused to answer is not badgering.

"The people with concerns about this are not Surf Air's enemies. Please quit treating us as such."

I am not; see:
Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
3 hours ago
Peter Carpenter is a registered user.
Julie - I understand and respect the fact that you and others object to the noise created by airplanes - sensitivity to noise is a personal and subjective manner.
I don't understand the concerns about safety because, as posted above, the aircraft being used is the safest general aviation aircraft in the world and lots of airplanes have been flying this IFR approach for years without a problem. Safety is not subjective but based on data - except where no data exists as for the risks of a proposed design for a new and different nuclear reactor.

My objective remains to try to help the community reach a reasonable solution - which requires understanding the legal and regulatory facts.


Posted by Diane, a resident of another community
on Dec 14, 2013 at 12:28 pm

Peter,

I have not refused to answer you. I have told you to look at my prior posts to refresh your memory. If you do not want to take the time to do that, that's fine. Continuing to insist on a response from me when I have already given it, is indeed badgering, whether you chose to admit it or not.


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 14, 2013 at 12:30 pm

Get real councils:

Thanks. I was just investigating that last night...because I was unsure of who to contact: Anna Eshoo or Jackie Speier.

I have already made a preliminary contact with Jackie Speier's office.

So Anna Eshoo would be the representative to contact. Okay.


Posted by resident, a resident of another community
on Dec 14, 2013 at 12:44 pm

Folks - this is turning into a food fight. Mr Carpenter is reading a rule book and trying to point Surf air over the west side of the peninsula. Sorry - does not make sense. It is easier to point Surf air over the lower population of the east side of the state / bay then let them cross the bay to San Carlos. There is a designated route there. They get to stay in business - however they are more anonymous in this approach so are not "disruptive".
Does that make too much sense? Or is this the circus coming to town?


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 14, 2013 at 1:12 pm

Peter Carpenter:

This morning, when I read your post, I was glad and encouraged to see that you understood and was giving some validity to different points of view. But my sense of encouragement was short-lived.

I could not immediately post because I had other commitments.

I come back to see your post to someone who claimed that a plane "buzzed" their house.

(Paraphrasing now): Oh no...buzzing your house? At that altitude?, you commented.

What is fact-based about that response? Unless you live in the same house...how do you know what she heard? In fact, she knows more about that sound than you do.

That kind of response invalidates what others think they hear. You cannot say how loud that plane was with any degree of certainty, can you?

You proved your own point: hearing is "subjective": what bothers one person may not bother another. But it is subjective on BOTH sides: yours and hers.

I think hearing is partly subjective and partly very non-subjective. Ever been in a recording studio? Lots of measuring devices. The ear doctor? Measuring devices.

The "loudness" of sound is not its only quality. Repetitive sounds disturb...even if at a safe decibel level: ever have a fly buzzing around your ears that you can't get rid of?

As far as anything I've said about safety: I don't think I once said---ever said---that the Pilatus is an unsafe plane. I have not gone over my posts to determine that, but I am almost 100% sure of that.

The only thing I said is that I feared or wondered whether an increase in air traffic could increase risk.

You know, in many ways, I'm "out of my league" in these discussions. I value and respect the knowledge and training that aviation experts and pilots have. I do not have that.

But there is also validity in what the non-aviators have to report. I don't think that that should be discounted off-hand.

But thank you for posting regarding my concerns.

I think this is safe to say: no one wants trouble. Maybe the goal could be just a little more peace and quiet, if possible.

Judging from this morning's stream of flights, I'm not too hopeful.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 14, 2013 at 1:13 pm

Diane:

I have not dictated anything to you regarding posting here. All I have asked for are facts in support of your opinion. I've read your prior posts. Nowhere in those posts do I find any FACTS. Just opinion. You're clearly entitled to your opinion, but that's all it is. An uninformed one at that. And I know that because the facts don't support your opinion and you have never presented a single fact in support of said opinion.

Sorry if you think being asked to support your opinion with facts is "badgering."


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 14, 2013 at 1:20 pm

Julie:

the facts regarding "buzzing" are that the approach has a minimum descent altitude. That altitude is 1260 feet. If the Surfair plane was correctly flying the approach, and that is highly likely, it wasn't any lower than 1260 feet. That doesn't really qualify as buzzing. I think that was the basis of Peter's response. It was fact based.

As to the objective measurement of sound you are right. I believe someone posted a dB level that a Surfair overflight produced at one point in this discussion. I asked if anyone had done the same for the multitude of leaf blowers that are constantly running in our neighborhoods. No response. I hazard a guess that the leaf blowers are louder. That brings us back to the subjective. The same folks that are now complaining about Surfair have been overflown for years by other aircraft and they've not complained.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 14, 2013 at 1:26 pm

resident:

as a former pilot you should know all commercial traffic in and out of SFO, SJC and OAK are under positive control by ATC. As is Surfair. There's no "juggling" involved. ATC has rules that designate allowed spacing of aircraft and they follow them.

As to being based in Hayward, I would imagine Surfair researched where the best locations would be. I think San Carlos was probably better because their market is closer to San Carlos. It creates a great time savings. Driving to Hayward just adds time. Especially if you're doing it in rush hour traffic.


Posted by Diane, a resident of another community
on Dec 14, 2013 at 1:27 pm

Menlo Voter,

No one here is required to justify their ideas, thought, opinions, etc. to anyone else on this forum.

I have justified my believe that it is unsafe. If it does not meet your "criteria", that is just too bad.

Yes, Menlo Voter, you ARE a bully and yes, Menlo Voter, you are badgering people in this forum.

I am just stating to you straight out, that I will not be bullied, intimidated, or badgered into silence and if that is your intention, your efforts are futile.

I am glad to see that others will not be silenced as well.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 14, 2013 at 1:28 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"It is easier to point Surf air over the lower population of the east side of the state / bay then let them cross the bay to San Carlos."

The IFR approach MUST begin at AMEBY which is near shoreline amphitheater.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 14, 2013 at 2:18 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Julie- In the aviation community and the FAA buzzing is defined as flying lower than 1000 ft over heavily populated areas. There is an exception for the terminal phases of landing and takeoff. The aircraft in question was not, in those terms, buzzing. The person's perception was that the aircraft was too low - a subjective standard. No SurfAir pilot is going to risk her/his ATP rating by violating the following rule:

"Part 91 > Section 119 - Minimum safe altitudes: General

Except when necessary for takeoff or landing, no person may operate an aircraft below the following altitudes:

(a) Anywhere. An altitude allowing, if a power unit fails, an emergency landing without undue hazard to persons or property on the surface.

(b) Over congested areas. Over any congested area of a city, town, or settlement, or over any open air assembly of persons, an altitude of 1,000 feet above the highest obstacle within a horizontal radius of 2,000 feet of the aircraft.

(c) Over other than congested areas. An altitude of 500 feet above the surface, except over open water or sparsely populated areas. In those cases, the aircraft may not be operated closer than 500 feet to any person, vessel, vehicle, or structure.

(d) Helicopters. Helicopters may be operated at less than the minimums prescribed in paragraph (b) or (c) of this section if the operation is conducted without hazard to persons or property on the surface. In addition, each person operating a helicopter shall comply with any routes or altitudes specifically prescribed for helicopters by the Administrator."


Posted by resident, a resident of another community
on Dec 14, 2013 at 2:41 pm

I am not suggesting that Surf relocate to Hayward - I am pointing out that there is an existing flight line on the east side of the state / bay and Hayward serves a fairly sophisticated set of equipment requirements - more so than San Carlos. That is a given - the rationale is that Surf can avoid all of this controversy by following the designated flight line on the east side of the peninsula then cross over the bay in vicinity of San Carlos. They can base themselves in San Carlos. San Carlos wins, the west peninsula wins. Everybody wins - Except Surf air wants to be controversial and is getting a lot of attention. If and when it suites them - when enough negative pressure is exerted then they can modify their approaches.

A 9 person commuter plane went into the water in Hawaii due to engine failure - 1 person died. That happened this week.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 14, 2013 at 2:45 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"the rationale is that Surf can avoid all of this controversy by following the designated flight line on the east side of the peninsula then cross over the bay in vicinity of San Carlos."

You are not paying attention - as stated above the IFR approach MUST begin at AMEBY which is near shoreline amphitheater even if the plane is coming from the bay side.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 14, 2013 at 2:49 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Here is the actual IFR plate for ALL IFR arrivals at San Calos:

Web Link


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 14, 2013 at 2:50 pm

Menlo Voter:

I was responding to what Peter Carpenter said. But if you want to field it and comment on it, fine.

If you need to include the words "If"...and the phrase "highly likely", then the fact is contingent on those two things. That is not a fact either.

I think that these kinds of debates do little to get nearer providing solutions. I think they make people feel badly about something they should be feeling good about. Namely, that each of us in our own way are trying to find some solution that will provide some degree of comfort.

It's not about who is "right" . Only when who is right will make a difference to the speed of finding mediation for all of this...does being right even matter.

I'm not trying to "do battle" or to be right or to "win". I don't think most people are. But it seems to me that these discussions have taken on a very contentious tone. That does not advance the cause or goodwill. It happens when people's opinions differ, I guess. But to what end?

For me, it is a privilege to have these discussions with the like of well-informed, well educated people. In a group consisting of people such as these, including you, no one should have to prove their credentials.

We all have our areas of expertise.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 14, 2013 at 2:52 pm

Diane:

you haven't "justified" anything. All you've done is provide an uninformed opinion. That's your right. I'm just trying to keep the discussion factual. You aren't. That's ok too. I'm also not trying to silence you at all. Just confirming what I thought. You have an opinion unsupported by facts. As it is your right to have that opinion and pronounce it to the world it is my right to my freedom of speech as well. I choose to use my right to point out that yours is an uninformed opinion unsupported by facts. Flame away.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 14, 2013 at 2:52 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Julie - I think that Menlo Voter and I are continuing to provide factual material from published sources in order that the community can be better informed about the reasonable options and the expected outcome.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 14, 2013 at 2:55 pm

Peter:

that plate is for GPS Z. It is my understanding they are using the GPS Y. I could be wrong, but the GPS Y has a higher MDA.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 14, 2013 at 2:58 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Here is the plate for GPS Y:

Web Link


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 14, 2013 at 3:12 pm

Menlo Voter, Peter Carpenter
Quoting Menlo Voter's statement to Diane:

" I choose to use my right to point out that yours is an uninformed opinion unsupported by facts. Flame away."

This is what you call..."factual material from public sources".

This is inflammatory and derisive.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 14, 2013 at 3:17 pm

Hawaii crash aircraft - Cessna Caravan.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 14, 2013 at 3:21 pm

Julie:

I'm sorry you find it derisive. I don't appreciate being called a bully or being accused of trying to silence someone here. I'm not and I didn't. I responded to the accusation. Perhaps more forcefully than I should have, but I get tired of people accusing anyone of being a "bully" when during a debate they are asked to back up their statements with facts. Diane has been repeatedly asked to do so. She hasn't, won't or can't. That request doesn't make me a bully. It makes me someone trying to have a factual conversation with someone unwilling to do so. Hence my frustration.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 14, 2013 at 3:24 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

We have opinions and we have facts - they are different.

When a poster consistently refuse to provide any facts to support their assertions then they are, by definition, stating an opinion.

Do you consider another poster stating "I find you insufferable" to be inflammatory and derisive?


Posted by Diane, a resident of another community
on Dec 14, 2013 at 3:27 pm

Menlo Voter,

If you want to deny the fact that planes crash, experience mechanical failure in one form or another that's fine. If you want to deny that an increase in the number of flights, increases risk, that's fine. If you want to dismiss all of this as highly unlikely and hardly worth bothering to worry about, that's fine.

I simply do not agree with you. And no amount of lecturing and pounding of your so called "facts" will make me agree with you.

Go ahead and call me ignorant and uninformed all you like. I grew up on that hog farm you keep referring to, so I know how to roll around in the mud. Oink! :)


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 14, 2013 at 3:31 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

As noted facts are those thing which can be established by published laws, rules, regulations and studies.

Everyone is entitled to their own opinions, but not to their own version of the facts.

If you have factual information which supports your opinion then please post it so that we can all benefit from the basis for your opinion.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 14, 2013 at 3:46 pm

Diane:

I invite you to show where in any of my posts that I have "denied" that planes crash. I base my opinion on the facts surrounding the aircraft and it's operators. The PC12 has an extremely high safety rating. It has a very low accident rating, something like .22 fatalities per 100,000 flight hours. One needs to look at facts like those to make an informed opinion as to inherent risk. I've done it and I know that even if Surfair was to increase its flight volume to 40 a day there would still be a greater likelihood of someone on the ground being killed in a car crash or any other number of mundane things like slipping in a bath tub than to be hit by a PC12 operated by Surfair.


Posted by Diane, a resident of another community
on Dec 14, 2013 at 3:48 pm

Geez, Peter...I thought I already did. Okay, here it goes again:

1. Planes crash
2. Planes experience mechanical failure
3. An increase in the number of flights increases risk.

Opinion:

1. Highly unlikely isn't good enough
2. Not over our schools
3. Not over our homes


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 14, 2013 at 3:57 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"1. Planes crash" - a fact but not one that is quantified. Airplane crashes occur very seldom and the PC 12 much less seldom than any other plane of its type
"2. Planes experience mechanical failure" - a fact but not one that is quantified. The PC-12 has the most eligible engine in aviation and it operates at only 65% of its rated power; failures with this engine are almost non-existent.
"3. An increase in the number of flights increases risk." A fact, but if the risk is very low then the increased risk as also very low. SurfAir flights with the PC-12 and ATPs flying them are much less likely to crash than other planes that routinely operate in this area. And the more they fly a given route the lower the risk of any individual failure - the value of experience.


Posted by Diane, a resident of another community
on Dec 14, 2013 at 3:59 pm

Thank you Peter, for verifying that the facts I base my opinions on are indeed fact. I rest my case that I have justified my opinion.


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 14, 2013 at 4:10 pm

To anyone it may concern:

Any questions addressed to me right now will have to remain rhetorical only, for the time being.

Sometimes silence truly is golden.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 14, 2013 at 4:11 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

The quantified fact is that fatal accident rate for the PC 12 in 2012 was 0.26/100.00 hours of operation which is lower than any other plane operating out of San Carlos - and NONE of those were people on the ground.
Web Link


The quantifiable fact is that since the first date of manufacture, all single engine turboprop aircraft combined have compiled over 8,000,000 (eight million) flight hours with no (that's zero) fatalities due to engine failure.
Web Link


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 14, 2013 at 4:11 pm

Diane:

saying that "planes crash" is a fact to justify your opinion is like saying "it rains." No kidding? What's important is how often, how likely is it to have an impact on you and how likely are you to get caught in it, not the fact it rains.

Life is about risk management. Expecting that we should never be exposed to ANY risk is unrealistic.


Posted by Diane, a resident of another community
on Dec 14, 2013 at 4:22 pm

Menlo Voter,

Yes...didn't I state that I had already justified my opinion? I believe that Peter's expert opinion on the subject proves that that I justified my opinion. I realize that my opinion will never be justified to your satisfaction, but I am willing to live with that, as heartbreaking as it might be. Are you willing to live with the fact that I am entitled to my opinion?

I am not expecting to go through life risk free. I don't think I ever implied that I was.

I just happen to believe (again, based on my own supporting facts) that Surf Air flights should not be going over our schools and our homes, and that an alternate flight path should be devised for Surf Air to minimize risk and yes, also, to minimize noise annoyance.


Posted by neighbor, a resident of another community
on Dec 14, 2013 at 4:29 pm

Over 360 comments by 4-5 people who go back and forth with the same arguments -- hardly a groundswell of shared opinion on this issue. The only clear thing from the thread is that you will never convince each other you're right, and you'll never agree on anything. However it's clear that the principal participants all seem to have lots of ego.

Why not hash it out in person, face-to-face over a cup of coffee (and spare us this nonsense)?

Get outside and enjoy the beautiful day....BTW, I did go outside and didn't hear a single plane.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 14, 2013 at 4:32 pm

Then Diane, I guess you also believe NO aircraft should be flying over our homes, schools, etc since in many, many cases the likelihood of a crash with one of those aircraft is higher than that of a Surfair aircraft. Good luck getting that to stop happening.

As I've said before, this isn't about safety it's about noise. You want to make it about safety but it's not. You think if you drag safety into the equation you'll get more traction trying to stop Surfair flights to stop the noise they cause.

As you said, we'll just have to agree to disagree.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 14, 2013 at 4:34 pm

good point neighbor.

By the way I was outside today. Heard and saw all kinds of airplanes.


Posted by Diane, a resident of another community
on Dec 14, 2013 at 4:41 pm

Menlo Voter,

You are very wrong about that. What kind of traction could a little ole ignorant girl like me from a hog farm be hoping for anyway? I am not the one with the money, power, and influence. I would bet that most of the people who have voiced their concerns on this forum are not either.

I am just a simple hog farm girl who is sincerely concerned about the risk factor of Surf Air flights going over our homes and our schools and who is also bothered by noise annoyance and worried on negative impact that might have on community health in the long term.

You may find my concerns invalid, I do not. You may think there are ulterior motive behind my concerns, but there are none.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 14, 2013 at 4:57 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Correction -the quantified fact is that fatal accident rate for the PC 12 in 2012 was 0.26/100,000 hours of operation which is lower than any other plane operating out of San Carlos - and NONE of those were people on the ground.


Posted by neighbor, a resident of another community
on Dec 14, 2013 at 6:16 pm

This thread is a Saturday Night Live skit


Posted by Resident, a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Dec 14, 2013 at 6:48 pm

Peter.

Would it be a fact that
That Surf Air is responsible for 33% of all noise complaints to SQL, if the Airports Director of Operations states it.
With your extensive knowledge, How many total operations are flown out of SQL a year
What is the % of total operations that Surf Air flies out of SQL
What percentage of total operations accounts for 33% of all noise complaints?
Surf Air flies 6 flights a day

I appreciate your help on this I'm having a difficult time coming up with this number

Surf Air accounts for ----% of all operations but 33% of all complaints, Is that possible,

I'd like to get some facts straight if you can help me.




Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 14, 2013 at 6:56 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Resident - you still haven't answered my question -who are you and who pays?

Re numbers of noise complaints, this thread has created a flash mob to do exactly that about SurfAir so even if your facts are correct they are not complete.
It was by experience in a decade as Chair of the Palo Alto Airport Joint Community Relations Committee that most noise complaints were made by a very small number of individuals complaining multiple times. And at Reed-Hillview Airport over 90% of the noise complaints were made by one individual.

So how many individuals have complained?


Posted by Resident, a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Dec 14, 2013 at 7:07 pm

Peter, What does "who pays" mean?

I have no financial obligation or responsibilty to anyone on this matter.

Having settled that lets go to your next line,

"even if my facts are correct,"

i thought this has become all about FACTS, At least that what you keep telling us to defer to,

So not that you agree that my facts are correct. Can you answer the question please,


Posted by Resident, a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Dec 14, 2013 at 7:39 pm

Peter,
I'm not the math,stat/wizard you are but as I've said before, i respect your vast experience in aviation as demonstrated by all the facts you've quoted but if you want to avoid this one I'll have to give it a try.

I had to defer to Wikipedia for some help,

SQL had 155,273 operations per year, that was as of 2007, Their latest statistic, if you have a more current # lets use it.
If they have 155,273 total operations at SQL and Surf is responsible for 2190 annualized operations 6 per day 365 days in the year. That would equal .01410419 of total operations accounting for 33% of all complaints.
Can you check my math.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 14, 2013 at 7:41 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"With your extensive knowledge, How many total operations are flown out of SQL a year
What is the % of total operations that Surf Air flies out of SQL
What percentage of total operations accounts for 33% of all noise complaints?"

I do not know the answers to these questions. Since you have talked with the Director of Operations he should be able to give you take information.

Resident - you still haven't answered my question -who are you. Answer the question please? When you know exactly who I am and you ask me to declare my financial interests it is only proper that you also identify yourself.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 14, 2013 at 7:48 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Residents - your math so far is correct but the missing data point is how many individuals submitted those SurfAir complaints? If was a hand full of flash jobbers then I would not be overly concerned.


Posted by Resident, a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Dec 14, 2013 at 7:53 pm

Peter I don't know you but Your getting very defensive. Lets go back to the facts.


The number is astronomical,


I'll let my facts stand on their own.




Posted by Diane, a resident of another community
on Dec 14, 2013 at 8:27 pm

Thank you, get real Councils, for the suggestion of contacting Rep. Eshoo and and the web link. I would have thanked you earlier in the thread, but I was momentarily distracted.

Thanks also, Jetman, for that interesting article.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 14, 2013 at 8:34 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"Lets go back to the facts. "

You don't have all the facts - your math so far is correct but the missing data point is how many individuals submitted those SurfAir complaints? If was a hand full of flash jobbers then I would not be overly concerned.

Resident - you still haven't answered my question -who are you. Answer the question please? When you know exactly who I am and you ask me to declare my financial interests it is only proper that you also identify yourself.


Posted by Diane, a resident of another community
on Dec 14, 2013 at 11:00 pm

Again just stating my opinion here, but Resident appears to be a concerned citizen while [portion removed. Please do not attack or characterize other posters.] Just my observation.


Posted by Jetman, a resident of another community
on Dec 15, 2013 at 12:45 am

Do commercial aircraft avoid flying over San Francisco? Decide for yourself:

This diagram Web Link illustrates the approach and departure plan for bay area airports under the prevailing westerly wind pattern.

Keep in mind when viewing the above diagram that the pale purple approach route shown arriving from the north crosses San Francisco at 11,000'. This same route descends to 3,000-3,200 by the time it crosses 101 in Palo Alto.

Sure looks like commercial aircraft avoid flying low and loud over San Francisco to me... but decide for yourself.


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 15, 2013 at 2:07 am

Jetman:

What a clear diagram. You provide true information.

We don't realize things until we think about them. Funny way of saying what I'm trying to say I guess.

Now it does occur to me that I've never seen alot of planes when in San Francisco.


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 15, 2013 at 4:41 am

Peter Carpenter:

Re:"Do you consider another poster stating "I find you insufferable" to be inflammatory and derisive?"

I will answer your question now.

Yes, I certainly do.


Posted by get real Councils, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 15, 2013 at 5:53 am

Diane, I appreciate your "thank you" for linking Anna Eshoo's email contact. I am afraid I am guilty of thinking everyone on this lengthy thread is from Atherton, and I know that is not the case. I am also living in the past in that the 12th Districts were redrawn I believe into the 18th Districts (Anna Eschoo) and the 14th District (Jackie Speier). The physical boundries can be found on the Eshoo and Speier links. Basically to the north of Atherton is in Speier territory. I would encourage everyone to email them with your concerns as that appears to be the only way to the FAA and they are running the show with their regulations and control over the money granted to the San Carlos Airport.
Here is Jackie Speier's email link:
Web Link


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 15, 2013 at 7:10 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"Menlo Voter and Peter Carpenter appear to be shills" More similar behavior from a poster that does not understand the rules of this forum -"Please be respectful and truthful in your postings so Town Square will continue to be a thoughtful gathering place for sharing community information and opinion."


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 15, 2013 at 7:13 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"Sure looks like commercial aircraft avoid flying low and loud over San Francisco to me..."

Yes and the same is true for San Carlos - see diagram:

Web Link

Lesson - the city that owns an airport can do a lot to protect its own interests.

Maybe Atherton should buy San Carlos Airport.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 15, 2013 at 8:32 am

Jetman:

if you would bother to go to the link I provided and spend a little time looking at the flight tracks you will notice that aircraft overfly SF all the time. In addition, I have spent part of five days a week in the city over the last year and can attest to the fact that aircraft overfly SF all the time. In fact,I was up there yesterday at 6th and Brannan and what did I see? A Hawaiian Airlines flight passing overhead at about 4000 feet. Not only have I seen regular commercial airliners, but the helicopter tour operators overfly multiple times a day at about 500 feet AGL. Now do you really think if "big SF money" was in control of air traffic they would be allowing the overflights of these helicopters?

SFO lands in the direction of the prevailing winds. That's toward the northwest. Meaning they have to make their final approach from the southeast. Take a look at the airspace around the bay area, SJC, OAK and the others and tell me how you would route the volume of air traffic landing at SFO without routing it the way they do.

Again, this isn't some sinister plot to put noise over some places and not others. All of the bay area airports have some form of noise abatement procedures in place. Even San Carlos.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 15, 2013 at 8:44 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

More facts to quantify the risks of plane flying overhead:

The Risk of Groundling Fatalities from Unintentional Airplane Crashes

Kimberly M. Thompson1, R. Frank Rabouw2, Roger M. Cooke3
Article first published online: 27 MAY 2002

DOI: 10.1111/0272-4332.216171

" This analysis provides updated estimates of groundling fatality risks from unintentional crashes using more recent data and a geographical information system approach to modeling the population around airports. The results suggest that the average annual risk is now 1.2 in a hundred million and the lifetime risk is now 9 in ten million (below the risk management threshold). Analysis of the variability and uncertainty of this estimate, however, suggests that the exposure to groundling fatality risk varies by about a factor of approximately 100 in the spatial dimension of distance to an airport, with the risk declining rapidly outside the first 2 miles around an airport."

Note that Atherton is more than 2 miles from San Carlos airport.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 15, 2013 at 8:54 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

More facts as to why reliever airports like San Carlos are so important:

"Two new studies have found that rough days may be ahead for air travel congestion.

Air travel infrastructure in the United States is in such bad shape that the average day at the nation's airports might resemble the busiest travel days of the year at nearly all of the top 50 American airports within the decade, according to the studies.

The studies, recently released by the U.S. Travel Association, a trade group, and the Eno Center for Transportation, a think tank, arrived at a similar conclusion: Many United States airports are already operating at or near capacity, and current air travel growth trajectories threaten to overwhelm the nation's aviation infrastructure and harm the United States economy." NYT 15 Dec 2013


Posted by neighbor, a resident of another community
on Dec 15, 2013 at 9:35 am

Looking at the frequency of posts + the few actual participants --- and calculating the time of day of each post from looking at the "posted X hrs ago" in the lead --- this thread is quite revelatory.

Do you take time-outs for meals and toilet visits? This "discussion" has become obsessive and irrational.

Folks: you're not going to convince each other, and you look very foolish indeed. This thread is just a big ego game.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 15, 2013 at 9:41 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Actually this thread is a test of whether facts can prevail over opinions.

It is, as intended, "a thoughtful gathering place for sharing community information and opinion."

Those who wish can simply ignore the thread.


Posted by get real Councils, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 15, 2013 at 10:11 am


Narcissistic personality disorder is a mental disorder in which people have an inflated sense of their own importance and a deep need for admiration. Those with narcissistic personality disorder believe that they're superior to others and have little regard for other people's feelings. But behind this mask of ultra-confidence lies a fragile self-esteem, vulnerable to the slightest criticism.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 15, 2013 at 10:17 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 14, 2013 at 9:13 am
Peter Carpenter is a registered user.
Julie - I understand and respect the fact that you and others object to the noise created by airplanes - sensitivity to noise is a personal and subjective manner.
I don't understand the concerns about safety because, as posted above, the aircraft being used is the safest general aviation aircraft in the world and lots of airplanes have been flying this IFR approach for years without a problem. Safety is not subjective but based on data - except where no data exists as for the risks of a proposed design for a new and different nuclear reactor.

My objective remains to try to help the community reach a reasonable solution - which requires understanding the legal and regulatory facts.



Posted by gwen, a resident of Menlo Park: Fair Oaks
on Dec 15, 2013 at 11:52 am

We enjoyed a very successful community meeting on Dec 11 with over 125 residents joining in and voicing their concerns.
Here is a brief report and an update. We will continue to have meetings withe Surf Air and the community leaders in January.

Our local community group is still involved in managing the noise problem, Surf Air has modified many of the flights over alternate neighborhoods each day by using a VFR routing.

The Working Group (Residents, Supervisor Horsley, Supervisor Slocum's office, Council member DeGolia, Surf Air, Air Traffic Control & Airport Staff) assigned to modifying the GPS approach into San Carlos Airport met on December 5th & the group has made great progress. We are working with Palo Alto & the FAA to explore our options & then will report back to the larger group(s.)

The Atherton Community meeting was well attended on Monday night. Elected Officials, residents & Surf Air were all given opportunities to speak. Surf Air's David Cole presented & stated that configuration changes did not reduce noise, so Surf Air began flying a "visual" approach when weather permits to avoid flying over the same homes multiple times per day.

Airport Staff has been tracking Surf Air arrivals & one day last week, 6 of 8 arrivals were "visual" approaches & did not fly over the homes where we have received noise complaints. So far Friday, all of Surf Air's arrivals have been "visual" approaches in an effort to reduce the noise footprint over Atherton & NFO.

We are still very involved and we post updates on Nextdoor- please join the site and if you haven't signed the petition, please add your name. What You Can Do To Help
It's easy. Voice your concerns, let your opinions be heard. You can do that by the following:
Sign the petition: Web Link
Call the San Carlos Airport Noise Hotline: 650-573-2666
Join the conversation on Nextdoor.com: Web Link


Posted by Diane, a resident of another community
on Dec 15, 2013 at 12:06 pm

Thank you Jetman for the web link illustrating the approach and departure plan for the bay area airports. It was very illuminating.


Also, thank you Gwen for continuing to post updates on the progress and efforts being made to solve this problem. It is very appreciated!


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 15, 2013 at 12:17 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"Our local community group is still involved in managing the noise problem, Surf Air has modified many of the flights over alternate neighborhoods each day by using a VFR routing. "

Perfect - working WITH SurfAir is the only way to solve this problem..


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 15, 2013 at 12:55 pm

Just curious, what routing is Surfair using when using VFR approaches? Are they just moving the noise and supposed lack of safety to another neighborhood?


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 15, 2013 at 1:37 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Hopefully a CDA (controlled descent approach) stating at a higher altitude west of the Stanford stadium will be part of the experiment. That is the only way to reduce the ground noise footprint.


Posted by Jetman, a resident of another community
on Dec 15, 2013 at 5:56 pm

Peter:

CDAs seem like a good idea in theory, but at least with commercial flights into SFO, the FAA's implementation under "Nextgen" has problems:

1. The ~3,000' altitude at which the CDA begins final approach is significantly lower than the 5,000' altitude at which the VFR begins final approach. The reduction in engine and airframe noise associated with the CDA does not make up for the 2,000' lower altitude.

2. The precision guidance concentrates the lower/louder (see above) flights over a smaller population, subjecting them to unrelenting, incessant aircraft noise. The visual approach distributed the burden over a wider population, as each individual pilot charted their own course to final approach.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 15, 2013 at 6:28 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"5,000' altitude at which the VFR begins final approach."

NO VFR approaches, even under NextGen, to San Carlos can occur going in San Carlos - the overlaying Class B airspace precludes approaches above 3999 ft in the area west of the Stanford stadium and above 2299 east of the stadium.

I believe a CDA could start west of the stadium at 3900 ft and, with the PC 12's glide ratio it would almost be a power off approach until past the Kaiser hospital.


Posted by resident, a resident of another community
on Dec 16, 2013 at 12:05 pm

So now we have IFR approaches and VHR approaches. Part of the problem is that Surf Air is trying to define itself as a private charter airline. It can use a VHR up the east side of the bay and cross over under those definitions. I went over the HWY 92 bridge last night - if they used the east side of the bay they would be on the low part. Saw some other small planes working that route. That is no different than saying that Surf can use VHR over Stanford Stadium AS An EXPERIMENT. I think Peter is a CAL person - other wise why focus on Stanford as a incoming flight path? A lot of time and energy is going into this. My vested interest is that I went over to the PA Airport to find out about flight paths - over PA.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 16, 2013 at 12:16 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"I think Peter is a CAL person"

Nope - Stanford

" - other wise why focus on Stanford as a incoming flight path?" Because there is where the highest ceiling below the SFO Class B airspace is.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 16, 2013 at 7:39 pm

So, I just watched the Surfair flight on the flight tracker coming in from down south to SQL. Passed over the Stanford stadium at about 2100 feet. About the same altitude they'd be passing over the south end of Lindenwood. They then gradually shifted "east" as they continued to descend. They do have to line up with the runway after all. They passed over North Fair Oaks at about 700 feet. Of course, they completely avoided Lindenwood. How do all of you in Lindenwood feel about pushing your noise over another neighborhood?


Posted by Jetman, a resident of another community
on Dec 16, 2013 at 8:32 pm

Well played Atherton! Fob the problem off onto Menlo Park, Palo Alto, and Stanford!


Posted by resident, a resident of another community
on Dec 16, 2013 at 10:00 pm

This is like a soap opera. If you look at a map the Hayward Airport is directly across the bay from San Carlos next to the HWY 92. It is a very large executive airport with a lot of designated runways and solid surroundings - golf course. Then look at San Carlos on the map - it is a tiny, limited airport that will not be able to grow - in fact my suspicion is that it would have been shut down. So Surf is picking the smallest, least equipped airport. That tells a story in itself - it is not good.
I talked to the people at Palo Alto - not sure why that fell apart but they are also not in a position to grow based on their location.
At the Community meeting they were talking about Surf flying over 101. Now you are saying it is flying over Stanford. I do not understand the disconnect in the meeting and now what is happening. Who is talking to Surf?
If they know they are irritating everyone why are they compounding it? Any notions on that?


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 17, 2013 at 8:03 am

resident:

as previously mentioned, Surfair probably chose San Carlos to be close to their perceived client base. Hayward is not that airport. Especially if they have to cross the bridge during rush hour.

My understanding was that they were going to try flying a variety of routes. I only observed one. They could well be flying over 101 as well.


Posted by get real Councils, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 17, 2013 at 9:34 am

Menlo Voter states
So, I just watched the Surfair flight on the flight tracker coming in from down south to SQL. Passed over the Stanford stadium at about 2100 feet. About the same altitude they'd be passing over the south end of Lindenwood. They then gradually shifted "east" as they continued to descend. They do have to line up with the runway after all. They passed over North Fair Oaks at about 700 feet. Of course, they completely avoided Lindenwood. How do all of you in Lindenwood feel about pushing your noise over another neighborhood?

I do not know if it is the same aircraft you saw on flight tracker but about dusk last evening I had a Surf Air fly over my house and it was low. It was very noisy. I live in Lindenwood close to Marsh Road and Bay Road (as the crow flies) and this is where the Pilatus was crossed and it not avoid Lindenwood. It was heading to the northwest and into North Fair Oaks flying over more Atherton around Middefield Road.
You people who make snide comments about Atherton are wrong. We did not suggest VFR routes elsewhere. That was on Surf Air. We did not ask to have Surf Air land in San Carlos and the meeting we had recently was open to all and attended by non-Atherton people as evidenced by Mayor asking for a show of hands. The Mayor of Menlo Park attended and publicly stated Surf Air would not overfly Menlo Park if he could help it.
Surf Air is a community problem and Atherton was impacted the most by the IRF route. Whether spreading the noise around is a solution remains to be seen but right now most people are inside because of the cold. Just wait until spring and 20 landings a day and see what the reaction is whether IRF or VFR routes.
At the end of the day San Carlos is a tiny airport in a impossible place for operating a hub with commercial aircraft on a regular schedule. For all the wrong reasons they got started and this has to play out. It is apparent to me the community outcry will likely trump all the FAA regulations and San Carlos Airport as a revenue source for the city and county. It will be messy and take time.


ort of envision it


Posted by reading for entertainment, a resident of Woodside High School
on Dec 17, 2013 at 9:43 am

I think I'll need to make more popcorn soon, you guys are making this long :-)

And by the way, you are making way more noise than the airplanes.

But keep on going...


Posted by resident, a resident of another community
on Dec 17, 2013 at 12:07 pm

I agree with Get Real. Woodside High - he is not flying over your head. I am in PA and he is flying over PA High School. Hays Elementary, and Jordan Middle School. I do not think that is classed as entertainment. Flying over Stanford west of the stadium is the core of the campus and student housing. I can just see this on a major football day - all of the Surf "owners" will want to fly over the stadium. I am sure there will be a lot of change up on routes depending on activity on campus.
This will just have to wait until after the holidays then pursue this from the Santa Clara County side to join up with the San Mateo County so there is a uniform approach on this.
Happy Holidays.


Posted by Resident, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 17, 2013 at 4:52 pm

Hi Get Real,

You're absolutely right on all points. I was thinking the same thing about people being indoors for the winter. I remember when Surf started in July how loud it was. With 4-6 flights a day it was tormenting to be outside trying to enjoy our back yard. It was impossible. If people are upset now wait until Spring when you're outside again when Surf works it's way up to 20 flights a day in to San Carlos.


Posted by Matt, a resident of Atherton: West Atherton
on Dec 17, 2013 at 4:57 pm

Love these latest melodramatic comments about a few extra planes "tormenting" us and making it "impossible" to enjoy life outdoors. People in this town don't have the slightest inkling about torment or sacrifice or disadvantage.

You do yourselves a disservice -- and undercut your own valid arguments -- by the constant hyperboles and false innuendos.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 17, 2013 at 5:10 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"People in this town don't have the slightest inkling about torment or sacrifice or disadvantage. "

So true - thanks Matt.


Posted by Resident, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 17, 2013 at 5:10 pm

Next Surf Air will be arriving San Carlos at 5:31, If you care to see which path it takes adjust for time over your home and time to land at 5;31


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 17, 2013 at 5:49 pm

Resident:

Thanks for the tip!

Guess what, right on schedule, coming from Stanford University area, more or less, flying more or less West to East, on a diagonal course.

I just happened to see your post minutes before it went over. Bright twinkling lights going over the tops of Redwood Trees that are in my "neighbors" back property.

It was quite low...but to my ears not that noisy. But it was low alright---by that I only mean it appeared low---almost as though it was going to brush those tree tops. I have no idea how low it actually was.

I was surprised to see it, actually. It looked almost pretty in its flight...against the darkened sky.

Thanks for making that post.

By the way: I do not live in Atherton, but if I put my finger through the cyclone fence that separates Atherton from Redwood City, I'd be in Atherton. You can live in Redwood City and have Atherton neighbors, if you are the last house at the end of the street that backs up to the city limits.

Anyway...thanks.


Posted by Diane, a resident of another community
on Dec 17, 2013 at 5:51 pm

"People in this town don't have the slightest inkling about torment or sacrifice or disadvantage. "

Wow. That's a pretty powerful statement. I don't even live in Atherton, and find that statement offensive.

Are you certain that everyone living in Atherton was born into money and privilege? Isn't it possible that there are some who come from more modest beginnings and have had to work for what they have?

I see that, if the crowd can't be convinced there is no problem with noise or with safety, then the next approach is to attempt to impeach the character of a whole community!

I find that pretty outrageous. It also smacks of desperation to me

I commend all of the people who are directly involved in working toward a solution and that you for your commitment and integrity.


Posted by Diane, a resident of another community
on Dec 17, 2013 at 6:03 pm

spelling correction -- Thank YOU for your commitment and dedication.

get real Councils and Resident...thanks for your posts. I couldn't agree more.


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 17, 2013 at 6:31 pm

RE:
""People in this town don't have the slightest inkling about torment or sacrifice or disadvantage. "

So true - thanks Matt."

I can't believe what I'm reading. 1. That anyone would make such a statement; and 2. That it would be given validity by an "I 2nd the motion".

First: How many people in Atherton do you actually know? Or are you basing your opinion on a 2-dimensional "idea" of what you THINK "Atherton people" are like?

When do we get out the white sheets and torches??!

This is dangerous thinking. Rosa Parks wouldn't approve, that's for sure. She had been through all of that mambo-jumbo before. Silly me---I thought we had actually evolved passed that kind of thinking.

By the way: I don't know anyone in Atherton either. I'm not defending their reputation for that.

This is what I think: people in Atherton DO have torment.. just as all people have, or HAVE had or WILL have. We are all in the same boat. Some boats are fancier than other boats. So what?

We are all living in a risky world...and sometimes a very painful world. Nobody knows another's pain.

It just may be that "someone from Atherton" may save your life some day.

I couldn't even believe what I read on this thread today.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 17, 2013 at 6:36 pm

"tormented"?! seriously? If you honestly think you're being "tormented" by the little noise you hear from the Surfair flights, I suggest you go down to where the folks living under the approach end of the runways at SJC live. You'll know what "torment" is. What you're dealing with isn't even remotely close.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 17, 2013 at 6:37 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

There are those who know what torment and sacrifice and disadvantage are like and those that have never experienced these things. As Matt correctly points out using those terms to describe the current irritation from aircraft noise discredits the otherwise reasonable concerns.

Listen to the message and quit trying to kill the messengers.


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 17, 2013 at 6:43 pm

Menlo Voter:

My niece lives in So. San Francisco. I am at her house for Christmas Eve each year.

I've heard it too. I know what you're saying in that regard.


Posted by matt, a resident of Atherton: West Atherton
on Dec 17, 2013 at 6:48 pm

Diane:

Atherton is one of the wealthiest, if not the wealthiest, zip code in America. We have the highest home prices. San Mateo county has the lowest unemployment rate in California. Those are facts.

Now, not everyone in our town is a millionaire. I get that. But at the same time, we are far better off than most other communities in the country and area who face real poverty and crime on a daily basis. We don't.

It's fair to call these planes an unpleasant nuisance. It's completely unfair -- and silly -- to call them a "torment" that makes life impossible. It's 4 minutes a day, at most!


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 17, 2013 at 6:50 pm

Julie:

so, given your experience at your daughters house at the departure end of SFO's runways, would you consider the noise Surfair makes on approach (quieter than departure) "tormenting?" Serious question. I want to see if my "torment meter" is out of whack.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 17, 2013 at 6:53 pm

Julie:

sorry, mistyped. should have been "niece."


Posted by Matt, a resident of Atherton: West Atherton
on Dec 17, 2013 at 6:58 pm

Julie:

You're exactly right! You DON'T live in Atherton, so you don't know the people here. I happen to live here, and since Atherton is the town that's driving these silly complaints, it's completely reasonable to ask the question about whether this is a valid use of our time and resources.

Ironically, the complaints aren't coming from the communities who are truly "tormented"... like East Palo Alto. Those folks are just trying to make ends meet, while the rest of us sit around and make wild accusations because we have to see an airplane every 4 hours while sitting in our idyllic backyards.

It's a hard knock life...


Posted by Resident, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 17, 2013 at 7:16 pm

Matt, Menlo Voter and Peter are like the school yard bullies. If you ignore them they will go away,


Posted by neighbor, a resident of another community
on Dec 17, 2013 at 7:26 pm

Just who are the bullies throughout this absurd thread is up for debate. Thank you Matt and Menlo Voter for injecting some additional sanity to this absurd thread.

Julie, Diane -- there is no groundswell of support for your position. You've resisted the facts and efforts at discussion/moderation offered by Peter et al. This hysterical nonsense should never have gotten this far.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 17, 2013 at 7:27 pm

resident:

[Portion removed. Please comment on the topic without belittling another poster.] Tormented! As Peter and Matt have noted, you do a disservice to those that have actually suffered torment by trying to compare your few overflights a day as "torment." Sorry, ask a Marine that's served in combat what torment is. This ain't it.


Posted by resident, a resident of another community
on Dec 17, 2013 at 7:35 pm

East Palo Alto is under the outgoing flight path for Palo Alto Airport. They are busy complaining to that airport. A while back a plane flew into the electrical wires and destroyed a house. There are three same type jets at the PA airport that are used for charter.
Mr. Carpenter is trying to influence the activity here - but not sure that he has any direct financial or political responsibility / involvement. Did he come to the community meeting? Did Matt come to the community meeting?

I thought everyone at the meeting was very well controlled and engaged in the process. I think that the mayor of Menlo Park is engaged in this activity and is a very responsible and positive influence. The mayor of Atherton ran a very good meeting. There were people at the meeting that have direct government responsibility for the actions concerning this issue.
Everyone that has direct contact with Surf Air should be a valid representatives of the cities and agencies affected.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 17, 2013 at 8:15 pm

resident:

actually when we follow the noise abatement procedure at PAO there are very few complaints, which I think Peter can attest to. Do you have some data to the contrary?

Yes, a pilot flew his plane into an electrical tower. Because he took off in zero visibility. Visibility was so bad the tower couldn't even see the runway. In fact, the tower could not clear him for take off and told the pilot if he wanted to take off he "was on his own." The pilot made a huge mistake trying to take off in these conditions. In addition, one would have to question his IFR currency given how poorly he executed his departure procedure. Please note this was not an ATP rated pilot as the pilots of Surfair aircraft are.


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 17, 2013 at 8:32 pm

Neighbor:

What is absurd about this thread or any other thread where people are expressing their views? You express your views here too. I am not saying that what you say is "absurd". Criticizing the whole thread? Or just what certain people say?

For your information, I am not looking for a "groundswell".
I have no agenda. I am seeking to influence no one. I am expressing what I think or believe and/or responding to other posters statements.

In fact, I have learned a great deal by listening to what people have had to say...and that is, even people with whom I may disagree with on some points of the discussions.

I respect people's right to express themselves, even when I have a different opinion than they may have. And I respect THEM. I hope that they will respect my right to speak also. Even if what I say is absurd.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 17, 2013 at 8:33 pm

Just watched another Surfair flight on the flight tracker. Flew pretty much the same route and altitude I observed last night. It flew very close to overhead my house. Didn't hear a thing.


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 17, 2013 at 8:47 pm

Matt,

It's alot more than 4 minutes a day...alot more. Are you home during the day? I don't know whose planes they are...but starting in the morning...there are a very active 4 hours...not 4 minutes...of fly-overs. This weekend was all day traffic on Sat and Sunday.

But, okay, I get what you're saying about torment. I did not read that post but I will go back and read it.


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 17, 2013 at 9:15 pm

Menlo Voter:

The reading on your torment meter at my nieces house would say Loud with a capital "L"...and then some.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 17, 2013 at 9:18 pm

Julie:

thank you. I thought so.


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 17, 2013 at 9:19 pm

Peter Carpenter:

I get what you're saying.


Posted by Diane, a resident of another community
on Dec 18, 2013 at 9:50 am

I wouldn't presume to belittle anyone about what they find tormenting or intolerable. Everyone's tolerance level is different. I accept that.

The suggestion seems to be that the communities involved are just being ridiculous in trying to solve this problem, since there are worse problems in the world.

That is a tempting theory to buy into. I look at the bills sitting on my table and I wonder to myself if they are really worth worrying about, balanced against the problem of world hunger. Still, I realize that they are my problem and responsibility and so I pay them, even though on a global scale they don't have much significance.

If a community is faced with a problem, it is the responsibility of the community to try to fix the problem. Big? Small? I don't think it matters.

If we can't fix the problems right here in our own back yards, or don't even think it is worth the effort to try, then I doubt we have much chance on fixing all of the other things around the world that need fixing.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 18, 2013 at 10:06 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"The suggestion seems to be that the communities involved are just being ridiculous in trying to solve this problem, since there are worse problems in the world."

Nobody has said that; what some of us have said that characterizing this problem as 'tormenting' and 'impossible' discredits the reality of the situation. The problem needs to be solved in a manner that works for all concerned and dramatizing and polarizing the issue is not helpful.


Posted by neighbor, a resident of another community
on Dec 18, 2013 at 10:56 am

Clearly, there is no groundswell of community outrage about this topic. A very few individuals may be trying to create something -- but so far the "discussion" in these 440 comments is from a few individuals.

As I've suggested earlier, maybe getting together face-to-face or on a conference call would be more productive....if that's what you are really interested in. Meanwhile, it has become a somewhat entertaining joust between egos who will never convince the parties opposing their opinions.

ATTENTION SOCIOLOGY STUDENTS: There's a publication (or maybe even a dissertation) about community process under all this crud.

DISCUSSANTS: Are you going to keep it up and shoot for 1000 comments? The publishers of this website love it. They know that a lot of us readers are suckers for the script -- we tune in to see if there is something different being said in this script, but there never is. You're getting nowhere, but it's a hoot.


Posted by groundswell, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 18, 2013 at 12:12 pm

neighbor, over 200 signatures and growing...read comments

Web Link


Posted by resident 1, a resident of another community
on Dec 18, 2013 at 12:46 pm

Getting back to the topic at hand:
1. The plane is a mechanical object requiring maintenance, and new parts. If it is flying back and forth 10 - 20 times a day there is a break point for any mechanical part over time.
2. If Surf Air is short of cash they will make some type of risk assessment as to when they repair the plane.
3. Who is going to replace the part if the plane is in San Carlos but there are no parts or logistical repair crew? During the meeting the General Manager - who has been on-board for 1 month - stated that the 2:30 AM flight happened because they had to repair a plane in SOCAL then get into position in San Carlos. Is the pilot able to also be a plane repair mechanic if a problem is determined during flight to San Carlos?
4. Major airlines have union based repair crews who are fully trained on the planes they are working on. They also have a very sophisticated supply chain procurement system for their vendors so they are not short on parts. If Surf is following their current operating procedures then I am assuming that they are by-passing a union-based repair crew at their base locations. There is a lot of money invested in the logistical repair of planes, replacement parts, and proper training of the maintenance crew to repair the plane. Also training and certification of the pilots.
5. The engine on the plane is not a typical airline part - they explained that at the community meeting. It is actually an engine for a different type of equipment - some type of pump.
6. The fact that the plane has a good safety record is only what anyone has published at any point in time and where, and how the other planes are maintained. If the other planes are truly used for personal use or real charters then they would only be used when they were operational. Surf does not have that luxury - they have sold a schedule.
7. Since the owners already declared in their discussions with published newspapers that they did not know anything when they got in to the airline business then assume that Logistics and Maintenance were not in the first considerations when they started this up. They actually had a lower buy-in / monthly price and had to increase it later on as these other considerations started to appear.

So - as to safety - only as good as the logistics and maintenance system in place. Price for membership and monthly payments are only valid until a new revelation on being in the airline business appears. Probably sooner rather than later.
Customer / community satisfaction and support is a high element of their selling points for new members. They are definitely not successful in their attempts to coordinate with the communities. They are knowingly irritating
the very communities they are trying to sell to.
They can make better choices - but those choices cost more.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 18, 2013 at 1:30 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Resident - you set a new record for assumptions in your last post if...., if...., if....

Why don't you just ask SurfAir about their progressive maintenance program?

You seem to have a preference for union labor - you have consistently refused to say who pays you.


Posted by resident, a resident of another community
on Dec 18, 2013 at 2:46 pm

Gee Peter - I have asked you if you were at the meeting - you have not answered that question. That is where the "official" reps for this problem came together. So were you there?
Yes or No
No - I have never been in a union but I have just retired from Lockheed Martin and know a LOT about aircraft.
Now when I hear a 747 come over I listen to the purr of the deep throated engines.
Surf sounds like a mosquito coming over.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 18, 2013 at 4:06 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"Surf sounds like a mosquito coming over."

Great, very few people complain about the sounds of a mosquito.

No, I was not at 'the' meeting as I was otherwise engaged in community service.


Posted by neighbor, a resident of another community
on Dec 18, 2013 at 5:43 pm

I was just in Atherton when a Surf Air plane went over my location. Nothing unusual or outrageous. A few seconds with some distant buzzing. Life in the city.

Mr. Carpenter -- you + the other folks asking for rationality on this "subject" are arguing with irrational people. [Portion removed; incivility violates terms of use.]
Editors: put an end to this nonsense.


Posted by Diane, a resident of another community
on Dec 18, 2013 at 6:12 pm

Thank you Resident for your insight. It sounds like there are some valid safety concerns to me.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 18, 2013 at 6:29 pm

"It sounds like there are some valid safety concerns to me."

Perhaps in the alternate universe of IF.

As neighbor points out this is becoming a pointless conversation. It's beginning to remind me of a conversation between an atheist and a believer. Neither will ever convince the other.

So, I'm done. I've tried injecting facts into the discussion. Those that don't want to accept the facts or have an agenda don't want to acknowledge those facts. It's pointless continuing the discussion.


Posted by Diane, a resident of another community
on Dec 18, 2013 at 6:31 pm

<<very few people complain about the sounds of a mosquito>>

Many people complain when it it buzzing right in your ear and won't be swatted away.


Posted by get real councils, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 18, 2013 at 6:57 pm

This adult has just left the room.


Posted by Jetman, a resident of another community
on Dec 18, 2013 at 8:46 pm

The FAA knows "NextGen" air routes are destroying property values, but uses collectivist argument of the "the greater good" to defend the program.

"June 4th brought two news articles about the FAA implementing new RNAV or RNP routes despite community protests, one at LaGuardia and the other at Boston's Logan Airport. In both cases the FAA put the new, much narrower, departure paths into place to save aircraft operators time and fuel, but the unavoidable side effect was to reduce the noise footprint's area but concentrate the exposure onto a smaller number of homes—and those residents are protesting. In the LGA case, they already have two members of Congress on their side."

Full story scroll down to: "RNP and Noise: Some Progress, but Not Enough" Web Link


Posted by Jetman, a resident of another community
on Dec 18, 2013 at 9:16 pm

LaGuardia Jet Noise has Locals Plane Mad
Crain's New York Business ~ December 18, 2013

"Last summer, residents of several pleasant, low-rise neighborhoods in northeast Queens swore they noticed a sudden spike in noise levels. Jets from neighboring LaGuardia airport seemed to be thundering overhead lower and more frequently than ever, setting off car alarms and rattling homes from dawn to dusk." Web Link#


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 18, 2013 at 9:46 pm

Thanks Jetman for the link.

[Post removed. Please post your own comments. Don't copy and paste articles or posts from other publications. They may be copyrighted. You can post a link.]


Posted by neighbor, a resident of another community
on Dec 19, 2013 at 8:50 am

EDITORS: This isn't a conversation. This is bullying. There is something going on here and we are being played. Another agenda may be involved.

Please be responsible journalists and end this thread.


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 19, 2013 at 9:33 am


By what authority do you issue what amounts to a "gag order" to the editors of this publication regarding this thread?

They are providing a forum for people to speak. THAT is the responsibility of "responsible journalists". What they do about this thread is THEIR decision, not yours and not mine.

There is a term in journalism with which you may or may not be familiar: "Gatekeepers"

Gatekeepers decide what news or opinion gets to appear in media.

There are no agendas here, unless you have one.

Why are you trying to act as gatekeeper?

Why are you even reading this thread if you so much disapprove of it?

Stop issuing gag-orders, first: to posters; now: to The Editors.

Go take a course in journalism and learn what responsibilities journalists have.




Posted by Diane, a resident of another community
on Dec 19, 2013 at 11:07 am

Jetman,

Thanks for the interesting articles. I guess this will continue to be a "hot button" topic as more and more communities begin experiencing an unexpected increase in aircraft noise, courtesy of the FAA, with the NextGen roll out.

It is good to see, though, that the community leaders in those areas are also stepping up and trying to protect their communities from the increase in aircraft noise.


Posted by neighbor, a resident of another community
on Dec 19, 2013 at 11:16 am

Your sarcastic efforts to "educate" me are absurd. And, your snide comments illustrate the problems with this thread -- very little civility, and an ignorance of facts.

Throughout this "discussion," I've tried to calm things down -- albeit with humor sometimes and maybe that was an error because now you are attacking me for participating. You chased Peter Carpenter and the others who tried to understand your position or disagreed with you off the thread. This is not civil.

As mentioned previously -- To find the reality of the noise problem, I went to mid-Atherton to witness an incoming flight yesterday. The sound was minimal and brief. That is why I believe there is some other agenda here.

A lot of people live in the path of planes -- we live in an urban area with 3 large airports and many smaller ones. Flight paths are crowded and carefully managed for safety reasons. If the occasional sound of small airplanes is something you can't live with turn up your radio/tv or wear earplugs, or sell your home and move elsewhere.

Editors: please be responsible journalists. The thread has become weird and is monopolized by 1-3 people who are grandstanding and bullying. It has slid away from civil community discussion. Something else is going on.



Posted by Diane, a resident of another community
on Dec 19, 2013 at 12:30 pm

Here is an interesting article about new legislation that has been introduced that would require airline carriers to start using quieter planes. It is called "The Silent Skies Act". I hope the bill is successful. It is nice to know that congress is trying to deal with the problem also!


Web Link


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 19, 2013 at 12:32 pm

I think that most of my posts have been civil.

You give me much more power than I even come close to having. I chased people away, you claim.

I have only posted my opinion or provided links to information.

It is not my nature to be snide or sarcastic. I don't have much taste for that.

But when someone "puts me down" for unwarranted reasons, I respond in kind.


Posted by resident, a resident of another community
on Dec 19, 2013 at 12:46 pm

I agree that we have covered most that can be covered at this point in time - it has been very educational. A lot of Hyperbole - but hey - that is part of the marketing of any product or service. Just wade through to get some good information - no matter how it is dressed up.
From my point of view in PA I do not appreciate low flying planes going over the major line of educational institutions - since that has not been the norm than it is a stand-out that needs to be addressed. PA small planes stick to the bay and east of 101.
Problem is that I could observe the plane on the west side of the house going down the Middlefield corridor in previous weeks. Then last evening on the east side of the house the plane was coming in via the bay and Moffat Field but turned in west to go down Middlefield. Any attachment of "must do" approaches has a lot of flexibility.
Have a great holiday all of you folks - I am now going to fly into San Diego - one of the top 10 most difficult airports according to NPR. Cheers


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 19, 2013 at 1:21 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Let the record show that I believe that Julie has always treated me and my postings with the respect that this forum expects.


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 19, 2013 at 2:32 pm

Peter Carpenter:

Much appreciated. Thank you.


Posted by Jetman, a resident of another community
on Dec 19, 2013 at 10:26 pm

Diane:

Sorry, but I am disappointed by the Silent Skies Act. Any new legislation needs to focus on noise at the destination (the human ear on the ground), not at the source. Most of the two-engined jets whistling overhead already meet the "stage 4" standards, and the airlines are probably planning on phasing out the older planes by 2015 anyway. The Silent Skies Act is just a big gift to the airlines, masquerading as help for the folks on the ground.

This legislation plays right into the hand of the airlines. The FAA, and the airlines, have been claiming all along that with the "NextGen" approach, aircraft would emit less noise, while knowing all along that the folks on the ground would be hearing more noise because the "NextGen" approach is lower, the planes are more frequent, and the flights would be concentrated over a smaller population.

Rep. Joseph Crowley is just another sleazy politician serving the airlines, and screwing his constituents, while pretending to do the opposite.

I feel sorry for the people of Queens. They are going to have to suffer with jet noise for two years only to find out the Silent Skies Act does nothing to relieve their plight.

To the people of queens I say... don't be a schmuck. Focus on noise at the destination, not at the source. The people of Queens are going to be very disappointed when 2015 rolls around.


Posted by Diane, a resident of another community
on Dec 19, 2013 at 11:21 pm

Jetman,

Oh darn. I thought it was an encouraging sign. Thanks Jetman. Back to the drawing board for Queens, I guess. :)


Posted by Resident, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 20, 2013 at 3:10 pm

Does anyone know if there is a secure door between cockpit and cabin on the PC-12
No lectures please, a simple yes or no would be appreciated.

Thanks


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 20, 2013 at 3:11 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

No - but they do not let anonymous persons on board.


Posted by Resident, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 20, 2013 at 3:32 pm

Apparently you can purchase a ticket for "Colleaques friends or guests". Anyone know if those people are vetted first and asked to show proof of who you are before boarding.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 20, 2013 at 3:37 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Resident - what did SurfAir say when you asked them these questions?

Oh, you did not ask them! Why not?

Doing ones own homework is usually a better learning experience.


Posted by Resident, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 20, 2013 at 3:42 pm

Trying to seek information. Any one besides Peter that knows, Maybe a member. Trying to keep this calm,


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 20, 2013 at 3:44 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"Trying to seek information" Why not go to the source? Call SurfAir.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 20, 2013 at 3:45 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

CONTACT US

Surf Airlines Inc.
1207 4th St Suite 400B
Santa Monica, California 90401


888.704.2582
info@surfair.com


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 20, 2013 at 5:26 pm


There is an Editorial in the NEWS Section of The Almanac, updated today:

Editorial: Permanent solution needed for noisy planes
FRIDAY, 4:47 PM

I had not noticed this editorial before.


Posted by caregiver, a resident of Menlo Park: Fair Oaks
on Dec 21, 2013 at 10:21 am

Elevating the approach path: How would we go about advocating this?

(Earlier in the thread there is some discussion of reducing decibels by increasing distance between aircraft and ground, along a new approach.)


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 21, 2013 at 11:34 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"Elevating the approach path:"

The IFR approach path cannot be elevated - it is a very standard 3 deg slope.

VFR approaches could start at a higher altitude IF they begin west of the Stanford stadium where the floor of the SFO Class B airspace is 4000 ft vs the 2500 ft east of the stadium. An approach started at 3800 ft would be, with the glide ratio of the PC 12, a very low powered descent therefor less noise and higher above the ground which equals a MUCH lower ground noise footprint. This greatly reduces the problem without simply shoving it off on our neighbors to the east.

The only way to get this accomplished is by working with SurfAir.


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 21, 2013 at 11:39 am

Resident:

Yesterday, after reading your post and seeing Peter Carpenter's suggestion, it occurred to me that there were a couple of things that I, too, have been unclear about regarding Surf Air. My questions are not exactly the same as yours but they are regarding security issues too.

I emailed them my 2 questions. I first went to their website to see if that would provide any answers. It did. But not fully.

When I get an email back from their office, I will post the information.


Posted by neighbor, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 21, 2013 at 1:13 pm

Someone made a green line on a map showing the path for the ifr approach and the approach 10 degrees further East. Can you do the same for the West of Stanford Stadium approach being suggested


Posted by Resident, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 21, 2013 at 1:31 pm

Did anyone hear a loud plane over Encinal this morning around 11:30 a.m. in bound to San Carlos, Was that a Surf Air flight. It rattled my Windows.


Posted by Diane, a resident of another community
on Dec 21, 2013 at 1:48 pm

I heard it and yes it was extremely loud, but I did not go out to look at the plane.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 21, 2013 at 2:02 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

It was a SurfAir flight and it was at 1300 ft when it crossed over Marsh Road and 101.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 21, 2013 at 2:03 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Here is where you can see the track and altitude of every plane flying in this area:

Web Link


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 21, 2013 at 2:06 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"a loud plane over Encinal this morning around 11:30 a.m"

As noted a SurfAir plane flew directly over 101 at this time - it was NOT over Encinal.


Posted by Jetman, a resident of another community
on Dec 21, 2013 at 5:21 pm

Plane Exhaust Kills More People Than Plane Crashes
National Geographic News ~ October 5, 2010

"In recent years, airplane crashes have killed about a thousand people annually, whereas plane emissions kill about ten thousand people each year, researchers say.
Earlier studies had assumed that people were harmed only by the emissions from planes while taking off and landing. The new research is the first to give a comprehensive estimate of the number of premature deaths from all airline emissions." Web Link


Posted by Jetman, a resident of another community
on Dec 21, 2013 at 11:05 pm

Does Lead in Aviation Fuel Endanger Public Health and the Environment?
Scientific American ~ September 3, 2012

"Lead was long ago phased out of automobile gasoline, but it is still in aviation fuel and is now the largest source of lead emissions in the U.S. What's being done?.. aviation fuel emerged as the largest source of lead emissions in the U.S. once lead was phased out of automotive gasoline beginning in the 1970s.

Leaded Fuel Is a Thing of the Past—Unless You Fly a Private Plane
Mother Jones ~ January 3, 2013 Web Link

"...there are 16 million people living within one kilometer of those airports, and 3 million children attend schools in the same radius. According to a 2011 study by Duke University researchers, kids who live near airports have elevated levels of lead in their blood..."

Don't worry though, the FAA might have a plan to phase it out by 2028. That's right, if your kid just started school near an airport, they will spend their entire K-12 inhaling lead. What is wrong with this industry?


Posted by Jetman, a resident of another community
on Dec 21, 2013 at 11:09 pm

Does Lead in Aviation Fuel Endanger Public Health and the Environment?
Scientific American ~ September 3, 2012 Web Link


Posted by Jetman, a resident of another community
on Dec 21, 2013 at 11:45 pm

Another "toney" neighborhood suffering from the aircraft industry's toxic air and noise pollution. East Hampton, NY has a website with lots of great links and resources focusing on aircraft air pollution:

Quiet Skies Coalition of East Hampton, NY
Website: Web Link


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 22, 2013 at 3:25 pm

Jetman:

"Scientific American " has good information...as well as the other source references you have posted. I have learned alot by reading them. Shocking information sometimes: re: health casualties from toxic fallout of overhead airplane traffic being worst than casualties from plane crashes.

I recommend these links to anyone interested in this subject.

I would love to see "60 Minutes" , or similar programs,
spotlight research results on these topics.


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 22, 2013 at 3:30 pm

Jetman:

Correction: the article I referenced was a "National Geographic" article.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 22, 2013 at 3:38 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Nothing in life - vaccinations, fire, transportation, food, etc. - is risk free and we individually and collectively decide if the benefits outweigh the risks.

There were 3,445 deaths from fire in the US in 2010 yet I don't hear a cry to ban the use of fire.


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Dec 22, 2013 at 4:24 pm

Peter Carpenter:

Re:
"Nothing in life - vaccinations, fire, transportation, food, etc. - is risk free and we individually and collectively decide if the benefits outweigh the risks."

That's true. Believe me, I have experienced that firsthand. I have been in the position of having to do risk assessment more times than was comfortable when the stakes were high.

As far as your other statement, I need to think about that one. Are people suggesting "bans"? Or adjustments?

Maybe fire is banned in certain circumstances?? I don't know. Maybe what is banned is predicated by what the circumstances are in each case and/or location...i.e.,nothing flamable allowed where oxygen is being used. Just thinking out loud here).

Long story short: I don't know what my answer is to that question. But it is something to think about.


Posted by caregiver, a resident of Menlo Park: Fair Oaks
on Dec 24, 2013 at 1:43 am

Re an alternative flight path, Peter wrote "The only way to get this accomplished is by working with SurfAir." But, how much is it about working with them, versus working within the local community to issue a coordinated response to operators? And to the FAA?

"The IFR approach path cannot be elevated...VFR approaches could start at a higher altitude IF they begin west of the Stanford stadium where the floor of the SFO Class B airspace is 4000 ft vs the 2500 ft east of the stadium." Assuming the operator is willing, do suitable weather conditions for visual landings occur often enough here to further the community's quest for quiet? And do the FAA and equipment makers need prompting to apply all our ritzy new navigation technology toward reducing noise exposure?

"An approach started at 3800 ft would be, with the glide ratio of the PC 12, a very low powered descent therefor less noise and higher above the ground which equals a MUCH lower ground noise footprint." Seems to me fuel/energy savings may be another angle here.

"This greatly reduces the problem without simply shoving it off on our neighbors to the east." I get that. Hope our neighbors to the west agree at least a little.


Posted by resident, a resident of another community
on Dec 29, 2013 at 11:01 pm

I am reading suggestions that people individually contact Surf Air. I am under the impression from attending the city meeting that there is a committee that is coordinating a unified response to Surf Air and plan of action. I suggest that the individuals coordinate their questions and participate in the meetings so that a unified plan of action is presented. The committee is responsible for working with the local government officials to coordinate any legal actions required. I am sure that Surf Air is not reading the postings here and the postings do not represent any official city position. Participate in the meetings so that an official city position is developed.


Posted by CherylPet, a resident of Menlo Park: Sharon Heights
on Jan 12, 2014 at 11:14 pm

Good thing you aren't dealing with the liars at SFO! They lie to your face, and have no problem with it! (I actually live in Millbrae, but saw this story online)


Posted by Jetman, a resident of another community
on Jan 15, 2014 at 11:41 pm

Could "nullification" be used to regain local control of regional airports, and the surrounding airspace, from the bureaucratic grip of agencies of the federal government like the FAA?

"Some NSA Opponents Want to 'Nullify' Surveillance With State Law"
USNews ~ December 3, 2013 Web Link

"Effort To Shut Off The NSA's Water Supply Goes Bipartisan In California"
TPM ~ January 6, 2014 Web Link


Posted by Julie, a resident of another community
on Jan 16, 2014 at 1:49 pm

Jetman:

Thanks for those great links re "nullification"...and State's rights and local rights. Water rights, way back when, we're important in territorial control of land. And now, here's a new application of the issue. Fascinating.

And the question, could nullification be applied for local controls---including regional airports?, is an interesting one.

The NSA material is important to know. Wow.

Anyone who reads this post, check out Jetman's links (just previous to my post).

They are important and informative.


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